Dogged call to play on

The Riverine Herald - - SPORT - Photo: Cath Grey.

With the tem­per­a­ture peak­ing at a swel­ter­ing 42.7 de­grees on Satur­day, all Goul­burn Mur­ray Cricket matches were called off. How­ever, Echuca de­cided to use the spare time for a train­ing ses­sion. Bats­man Matt Hinks is seen mark­ing his guard as Curt Town­row chats on his phone while Sambo pre­pares to do the leg work for him and field the ball. For the cricket wrap,

WHILE most crick­eters would have been re­lieved to hear their matches were called off due to ex­treme tem­per­a­tures, the same could not be said for BLUCC and Moama.

Cur­rently placed fifth and sixth re­spec­tively, Ba­mawm Lock­ing­ton United and Moama des­per­ately needed the match to go ahead to keep their hopes of reach­ing the top four alive.

An out­right win for ei­ther side would have seen them col­lect the max­i­mum 18 points and al­most cer­tainly closed the gap on fourth-placed Echuca.

And with the cur­rent gap at 24 points, BLUCC and Moama need max­i­mum time on the pitch to en­sure the fi­nals dream re­mains alive.

Which is why the week­end’s fix­tures were so im­por­tant — the top four were set to play each other in Echuca (4) against Kyabram Fire Bri­gade (1), and Rochester (3) to play Ton­gala (2); giv­ing those on the fringes of the fi­nal four the best chance to gain max­i­mum points against a lower placed side.

BLUCC were set to play wooden spoon Echuca South away from home, while Moama was to host sev­en­th­placed Cooma.

BLUCC wick­et­keeper Paul Col­bert said al­though his side is still ‘‘well and truly’’ in the Goul­burn Mur­ray Cricket A grade sea­son, they would have to buckle up sooner rather than later.

‘‘Fi­nals are still in the ques­tion. I think we’re two games out but look­ing at the other games we still be­lieve we’ll be in it up to our necks,’’ he said.

‘‘If things go to plan we could even push for an out­right re­sult. You have to go in pos­i­tive and con­fi­dent, and I be­lieve that’s on the ta­ble def­i­nitely.

‘‘We have Moama on Aus­tralia Day in a Twenty20 and then Ton­gala after that, and we fin­ish with Rochester so it’ll be tough but we’re up for it.’’

The matches which were heated out will now be played as one-day­ers on Satur­day, with no chance of an out­right win.

ABOVE: Echuca’s Tim Nathan leans into a beau­ti­ful cover drive dur­ing a train­ing ses­sion on Satur­day after the first day of play against Kyabram Fire Bri­gade was called off due to the heat.

LEFT: Echuca batsmen Si­mon Mad­dox and Matt Hinks re­flect on their time out in the mid­dle dur­ing the train­ing ses­sion

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