B GRADE

Yarrawonga Chronicle - - Classies -

Lak­ers B Grade played host to Mi­lawa at Lak­ers HQ on Satur­day. On the vast ex­panses of Stan Har­g­reaves Oval the Lak­ers won the toss and elected to bat on an­other per­fect day for cricket.

With a num­ber of play­ers un­avail­able the side had a very dif­fer­ent look to pre­vi­ous matches, but to their credit the play­ers gelled to­gether very well and played some great cricket. But the stand out for the day was 16 year old Tom Hicks who held firm and showed com­po­sure well be­yond his years to an­chor the Lak­ers in­nings.

Open­ing the bat­ting with Rod Wil­lett, Hicks and his part­ner got the Lak­ers off to a steady start with a 20 run open­ing stand. There was a mini col­lapse af­ter the fall of the first wicket, with the Lak­ers slid­ing from 1/20 to 5/45. Hicks was out­stand­ing play­ing great de­fen­sive shots and then tak­ing toll of any­thing loose in a 69 run part­ner­ship with his Cap­tain in Justin O’Brien.

The pair got the to­tal past 100 and into a re­spectable area be­fore Hicks was dis­missed for a well-made 42. Hicks’ dis­missal brought Ted Graham to the crease with O’Brien and the two vet­er­ans took the score into the 140’s be­fore O’Brien was out caught and bowled for an en­ter­pris­ing 52 and Graham dis­missed shortly af­ter chas­ing quick runs for 20. 14 year olds Hud­son Gil­lies and Jyda House then bat­ted out the fi­nal cou­ple of overs to get the Lak­ers to a very de­fend­able 8/147 from their al­lot­ted 36 overs.

In the field the Lak­ers started steadily with Ned Mullins tak­ing the new ball in part­ner­ship with Ja­son Sharp. Mullins was a lit­tle rusty and took a lit­tle while to get his line and length right but when he did he man­aged two wick­ets in his first spell to com­bine with Sharp’s con­sis­tent line and length that wor­ried the op­po­si­tion bats from ball one.

It was then the two Toms in Hicks and El­liott who re­ally put the brakes on the Mi­lawa bats­men through the mid­dle stages of the in­nings. El­liott was the stran­gu­la­tion spe­cial­ist and was un­lucky not to pick up any wick­ets but his bowl­ing part­ner­ship with Hicks put ex­treme pres­sure on the Mi­lawa bats with Hicks claim­ing two scalps.

Mi­lawa now 6/76 and start­ing to look shaky. The end of Hicks’ spell saw young B Grade debu­tant Jyda House in­tro­duced into the at­tack. House did what he was asked and bowled at the stumps, this can some­times be painful for the bowlers as but the young man stuck to his guns. Af­ter be­ing hit for four the very next de­liv­ery House clean bowled the bats­men to send him pack­ing. Mean­while at the other end vet­eran Trevor Fis­cher was spin­ning his usual web with his leg­gies.

Bring­ing the Mi­lawa sides to­tal to 9/94 and the Lak­ers were look­ing men­ac­ing with some 8 overs still to go! The re-in­tro­duc­tion of Mullins was the fi­nal straw for Mi­lawa as his pace was too much for the Mi­lawa tail-en­ders and hav­ing knocked over the stumps for the third time in the in­nings Mullins ended the Mi­lawa in­nings at 108 with three overs to spare.

A solid 39 run win for the Lak­ers which will boost the con­fi­dence of the young play­ers. Mullins was the lead­ing wicket taker with 3/20 from 6.5 overs. Jyda House 2/10, Ja­son Sharp 2/21 and man of the match Tom Hicks with 2/23 were the mul­ti­ple wicket tak­ers for the day.

Next week sees the start of the B Grade’s two day matches, host­ing City Colts at Vic Park No. 2.

Rod Wil­lett is clean bowled.

Opener Tom Hicks showed great com­po­sure mak­ing 42 runs.

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