Cats gain an edge over fi­nal­ist

Southern Riverina news - - SPORT -

Fin­ley have gained them­selves a men­tal edge head­ing into the Mur­ray Valle Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion Di­vi­sion One fi­nals with a tight 14 run win against fourth placed Co­bram-Yar­roweyah United.

Bat­ting first on their home deck at the Fin­ley Apex Sport & Com­mu­nity Cen­tre, the Cats got off to a shaky start with Ad­nan Ma­lik (four) fall­ing early.

Paul Mass­ing­ham (30) and Cougar McGrath (18) eased their way into the game putting on 48 be­fore both fell in quick suc­ces­sion.

The Cats’ mid­dle or­der strug­gled against the spin­ning ball and the vis­i­tors were well and truly on top with six Cats wick­ets back in the pavil­ion with the score un­der 90.

Dun­can Clarke and Archie Ma­son (seven) hung around and picked the right shots to play and put on a fur­ther 25 be­fore Ma­son was bowled.

An­thony King (11) and Clarke picked up the rate and when the lat­ter was dis­missed for 33 off the last ball of the in­nings they had man­aged to get the Cats to a de­fend­able score of 131 off their 40 overs.

The Cats had to bowl well and CYU got off to a fly­ing start, pun­ish­ing any­thing that was a frac­tion short, mo­tor­ing along to 1/27 off the first six overs.

With a change in bowl­ing Clarke and King were able to tighten things up and when King pro­duced a dou­ble wicket maiden when the score was on 46 the Cats were back in the game.

With a solid 40 run part­ner­ship in the 12 overs af­ter drinks the vis­i­tors had re­gained the up­per hand and were putting the Cats bowlers un­der pres­sure.

When the Cats claimed a run out it started a bat­ting col­lapse, with McGrath and Mass­ing­ham mop­ping up the young CYU tail to have them all out in the 40th over for 117.

The win keeps the Cats in the hunt for the mi­nor premier­ship sit­ting sec­ond be­hind Katunga by 0.02 of a per­cent­age.

In the fi­nal round of the home and away sea­son this Satur­day, Di­vi­sion One host the Deni Rhi­nos while the Di­vi­sion Two Cats, who had the bye last week, head to Co­bram to take on CYU.

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