Dogged call to play on
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