Premier Cricket: Willetton still on top after weekend of entertaining fixtures

Premier Cricket: Willetton still on top after weekend of entertaining fixtures
Round 3 match reports – Saturday

Claremont Nedlands v Wanneroo

Claremont Nedlands won a high-scoring match against Wanneroo on Saturday at Cresswell Park, with Tigers captain Nicholas Hobson scoring an amazing unbeaten century.

After being sent in to bat, Wanneroo navigated the tricky weather conditions superbly, opening with a 76-run partnership through Travis Birt and Robert Richards.

Although Birt was dismissed for 43 runs – which included five fours and two sixes – Richards continued, adding runs to the total with Matthew Spoors.

At 2-95, Spoors and new batsman at the crease Stuart Thompson continued to defy the usually dominant Tigers’ bowlers, dispatching the ball to all parts of the ground as they embarked on a brutal third-wicket partnership.

The dynamic pair added 94 runs during their stand, boosting the total to 189 before Thompson was dismissed for a quick-fire 54 from 56 deliveries.

Spoors and captain Christian Smith stayed strong throughout the awkward final overs, guiding the Roos to an impressive 3-229 at the end of the 50 overs.

Any confidence the Roos felt about having the game in the bag was immediately shattered in the opening partnership of Jacob Whiteaker and Nicholas Hobson.

The pair were brutal, ignoring the weather conditions and the bowlers coming at them to post a sensational 138-run opening stand to turn the match on its head.

Although Whiteaker was removed for 51, it mattered little to the Tigers, as Bradley Hope came to the crease and continued in the same vain as his predecessor.

Hobson was superb with the bat, handling the conditions and deliveries without any indication of stress.

He ended the innings, stunningly unbeaten, on 115 from 122 balls. Nine fours and two sixes came from his match-winning knock, where he and Tim David notched the winning runs in the 45th over.

Fremantle v Subiaco Floreat

Fremantle and Subiaco Floreat have fought out a classic battle on Saturday at Stevens Reserve, with the Lions emerging victorious by a single run after the match came down to the final ball of the innings.

Calum How and Hamish McKenzie belted out a 49-run opening partnership, setting the tone for the rest of the batsmen, before Fremantle’s Jake Carder struck with the ball, taking McKenzie for six runs.

Stoinis hit the crease in style, clearing the fence with ease, as he and Cameron Green snatched the momentum back from Fremantle, putting on a superb 89-run third-wicket partnership.

At 2-145, Ross Macauley and the other Fremantle bowlers finally started to make a dent in the Lions’ armour, chipping away ball by ball before taking three wickets in the space of seven runs, seemingly stopping Subiaco Floreat in its tracks at 5-152.

However, Stoinis stood resolute amongst the carnage, continuing to smash as many runs as possible in the least amount of deliveries.

He and Tim Monteleone added 55 more runs to the total before the big-hitting all-rounder was finally dismissed on the devilishly tricky score of 87.

Stoinis’ remarkable knock came from just 83 balls, including two fours and a whopping eight sixes.

At 6-207, the Lions ran out of steam, with Zach Ferris, Jye Richardson and Carder knocking over the tail.

Carder was tremendous for Fremantle with the ball, taking 3-22 as the Lions were bowled out for 242.

With an imposing target set, Fremantle could not have asked for a worse start, losing opener Sam Whiteman for a duck after facing just five balls.

However, Carder – possibly still full of adrenaline from his brilliant bowling performance – and captain Ashton Turner set about righting the ship.

The powerful pair put on an epic 109-run second-wicket stand to put the match firmly back on Fremantle’s terms.

Although Carder was dismissed at 2-109 after an impressive 62, Turner continued to turn over the strike with new batsman at the crease Daniel Kennedy.

The pair added a further 39 runs before disaster struck, with Hamish McKenzie and Chris Hansberry putting a dagger through the middle order.

The duo took three wickets in the space of nine runs, dropping Fremantle to 5-157.

In eerily similar circumstances to the Lions’ innings, Fremantle responded through Brayden Sutton, who helped put the match back in the balance.

With time running out, Sutton was at his aggressive best, dispatching the ball to all parts of the ground, while Jhye Richardson played his role turning over the strike.

Sutton continued to fight until the very last ball, where unfortunately it was tail-ender Benjamin Moore on strike.

Needing just one run to draw and two runs for victory, Moore scrambled to chase down the final run, but it was to no avail, as Stoinis, the hero with the bat for the Lions, pounced on the loose ball and nailed the run out to secure victory for the Lions by the smallest of margins.

Gosnells v Joondalup

Gosnells has won its first match of the season, defeating Joondalup by 11 runs on Saturday in a low-scoring affair at Sutherlands Park.

After winning the toss and backing the batsmen to do the job, Gosnells found itself in hot water.

The home side lost Timothy Hale and Daniel Payne cheaply, sitting dangerously at 2-15.

However, Luis Reece and captain Matthew Leipold hit the crease running, grinding out a much-needed 64 runs to keep the Centurions at bay.

With the momentum seemingly back with Gosnells, the Centurions’ bowlers exploded.

After Leipold was run out at 3-79, Jake Zsilinkszky and Zak Birchall went on a rampage with the ball, taking six wickets between them to have Gosnells on the ropes at 9-112.

Some late-innings heroics from Chris Prescott helped Gosnells to a defendable 142 before being bowled out in the 48th over.

With a small target to chase down, but difficult conditions to navigate, Joondalup also found the going tough.

The Centurions struggled their way to 6-44, as Chris Prescott and Luis Reece had a field day with the top- order batsmen.

A promising 33-run partnership to Tim Zsilinszky and Zak Birchall looked to have swung some of the momentum back in Joondalup’s favour. However, just when the situation was looking slightly better, Zsilinszky found himself back in the shed after a terrific delivery from Leipold.

With three wickets left, Joondalup did a remarkable job to get so close to victory, eventually being bowled out for 131.

Reece was unbelievable with the ball, taking 4-16 off 10 overs in a tremendous display.

Midland Guildford v Scarborough

Scarborough has defeated Midland Guildford by 29 runs in a rain-affected match on Saturday, notching its first victory of the season at Lilac Hill.

With 25 overs set instead of the full 50, Midland Guildford decided to give Scarborough the first opportunity to brave the conditions.

While finding it difficult, the Gulls managed to eke out a reasonable 35-run opening partnership to Josh Philippe and Luke McQuade, giving Scarborough a foundation to launch from later.

However, the loss of Philippe at 1-35 caused a domino effect, as McQuade (nine runs) and Nicholas Maiolo (zero runs) fell quickly after, leaving Scarborough floundering at 3-41.

A surprise promotion up the order saw Andrew Tye produce a handy cameo, as he and Jacob Johnston added 46 valuable runs to the total.

Tye was eventually dismissed at 4-87 after 31 runs, before Johnston continued to attack the Midland Guildford bowlers.

Liam Knight came and went soon after, while Johnston carried the Gulls to a handy total of 5-133.

Midland Guildford started its run chase on fire, zooming to 40 off the back of openers Mark Rice and James Kirwan.

However, at 2-48 following the loss of the openers, Midland Guildford found itself in a massive hole.

Liam Stevens and Maiolo took five wickets between them, as Midland Guildford suffered an almighty collapse.

Seven wickets fell in the space of 40 runs, with the home side having no answers to the Scarborough onslaught.

Midland Guildford managed to bat out the 25 overs, just to fall 29 runs short of Scarborough’s total.

Mount Lawley v Perth

Perth remains undefeated in season 2018-19 after emerging victorious against Mount Lawley on Saturday by seven runs in a rain-affected match at Breckler Park.

After being sent in to bat, Perth opened with a 34-run partnership to captain Luke Jury and Jonathan Wells.

However, the solid start was immediately undone, as the Hawks’ bowlers struck back, taking four wickets in the space of 20 runs, leaving Perth reeling at 4-54.

Although the situation appeared dire, Tom Scollay and Jacob Snadden hit the crease in fine touch, setting about turning the momentum back in Perth’s favour.

The prolific pair added 82 runs during their fifth-wicket partnership, before Snadden was dismissed for 34.

At 5-136, Scollay continued to turn over the run-rate, pushing the total to 151 before he was removed for a run-a-ball 52.

Scarborough eventually ran out of time, finishing the innings with 7-156 after 31 overs.

Justin Kandiah and Liam Purdy were superb working in tandem with the ball, taking three wickets each in an impressive display.

The Hawks’ run chase got off to a somewhat slow start, fumbling their way to 3-52.

However, James Newnham remained a constant threat with the bat, as he partnered with Dylan Sharman in a fourth-wicket stand worth 58 runs.

As Sharman and Andrew Bottega fell, Newnham continued to grind out the innings, pushing his side closer to an unlikely victory.

That victory was pushed even further away, with Newnham falling to a terrific Alex Calmy delivery after a brilliant knock of 66, setting the Hawks on their heels at 6-130.

Even without a specialist batsman at the crease, the Hawks only need 26 runs and still had four wickets in hand.

Jay Chislett made the most of his chances, scoring 21 from 17 balls before Calmy struck again.

The last four wickets fell for just 19 runs, as the Hawks fell agonisingly short of an upset win, bowled out for 149.

University v Rockingham Mandurah 

University has kept its undefeated season intact, defeating fellow top 6 aspirants Rockingham Mandurah by 57 runs on Saturday in a dominant performance at James Oval.

The decision to send University in to bat first looked to be a regrettable one, as openers Will Bosisto and Will Jacks found their rhythm early.

The pair produced a handy 65 runs at the top of the order, giving their fellow batsmen a platform from which to launch.

However, that opportunity was not taken from the Blues batsmen, as Bosisto, Jacks, Christopher Sabburg and Viv Paver fell within 25 runs of each other, leaving University treading water at 4-90.

With the match looking as though it was in the Mariners’ favour, Sean Stuart and Joshua Mason quickly reminded everyone how quickly a match can change.

An 86-run fifth-wicket stand put the match firmly back in University’s control, after Stuart fell to a marvellous delivery from Dane Ugle.

Mason continued to churn out runs for University, helped along by Matthew Birrell, adding a further 45 runs to boost the total past 200.

Birrell was eventually dismissed at 6-221, while Mason continued to pile on the pain for Rockingham Mandurah’s bowlers, scoring 83 runs before he was bowled by a brilliant delivery from Eric Botha.

Mason’s 83, which included six fours and two sixes, came from just 80 deliveries. Mariners captain Craig Simmons helped clean up the tail, ending the day with figures of 4-56 as University were bowled out for a whopping 254.

The Mariners looked to be in trouble early, losing Aaron Burrage at the beginning of their run chase at 1-13.

However, a steadying 75 runs from Tyler Robertson and James Bracey appeared to put the match back in the balance.

A further 40-run partnership to Bracey and Dane Ugle looked to set the Mariners on the path to victory, before disaster struck.

Following Bracey’s dismissal for 56 at 3-128, Ugle and Damien Burrage managed to scrape another 15 runs before Sean Stuart, Will Bosisto and Corey Rocchiccioli took the match by the scruff of the neck.

The trio took wicket after wicket, stifling the Mariners’ batsmen and taking the final seven wickets in the space of 54 runs.

Amid the carnage, Ugle was brilliant with the bat once again, scoring 57 runs, while Rocchiccioli and Stuart were tremendous with the ball, taking three wickets each and were instrumental in bowling Rockingham Mandurah out for 197.

Willetton v South Perth

Willetton has kept its position on top of the Premier Cricket ladder after dispatching South Perth by 78 runs in an impressive batting display on Saturday at Burrendah Park.

With the Dragons sent in to bat to deal with the windy conditions first, Cameron Bancroft and Iszak Milentis dug in to record a 47-run opening stand.

Another steady partnership from Bancroft and D’Arcy Short followed the dismissal of MIlentis, with the pair adding a further 49 runs to boost the total to 96.

Although Willetton were seemingly in control, Darius D’Silva managed to take the breakthrough wicket, claiming the dangerous Short for 27 runs.

Bancroft fell soon after, ending with a hard-fought half-century.

With the match evenly poised at 3-104, Aaron Hardy and Sean Brennan found a new gear, swinging freely and turning the strike over.

The pair put on an impressive 92-run fourth-wicket stand to elevate Willetton into a dominant position in the match.

However, at 3-196, South Perth captain Chris Chellew asserted himself on the match, taking two wickets in quick succession to put the match back in the balance at 5-204.

While Chellew had made inroads into Willetton’s batting line-up, Hardie was still dominating with the bat, as he added another 47 runs, this time with James Godfrey.

After Godfrey was removed at 6-251, three runs later, the dangerous D’Silva struck again, claiming Hardie after a simply superb knock of 94, which included five fours and five sixes from 86 balls.

Willetton’s innings ended shortly after Hardie’s dismissal, finishing on 7-256 after the 50 overs.

With a huge total to chase down, South Perth stumbled its way through the opening overs, falling to 3-50 in the blink of an eye.

Thankfully, for South Perth, Hilton Cartwright was able to steady the innings for the visitors, producing 44 handy runs with the help of D’Silva.

Hugh Brown and Tom Banton kept the run chase moving in the right direction, producing a 40-run partnership, before Willetton’s bowlers struck.

Alex Hepburn and Matthew Hanna ripped the heart out of South Perth’s defence, taking four wickets in the space of 16 runs.

Hepburn finished with 3-24 in a devastating spell of bowling, leaving South Perth 78 runs behind at the end of the innings.

Round 4 match – Sunday

Scarborough v Bayswater Morley

Scarborough have notched a breathtaking win over Bayswater Morley, defeating the Bears by a single run in a rain-affected match on Sunday at Abbett Park.

After being sent in to bat and the number of overs set at 40, Scarborough’s top order managed to handle the windy conditions well.

Following Luke McQuade’s run-out at 1-19, Jeremy Boyle and Nicholas Maiolo battled through the conditions to produce a 49-run partnership.

Following Maiolo’s dismissal at 2-68, Boyle found himself playing an anchoring role throughout the innings for the Gulls.

Another 40-run partnership, this time with Jacob Johnston saw Boyle, and the Gulls seemingly cruising at 3-108.

However, once Johnston was removed, the runs dried up for the rest of the Gulls’ batsmen.

Boyle was still dominating with the bat but Bears captain Liam O’Connor began to inspire his fellow bowlers, as wickets started to drop frequently.

Liam Knight, Lochie Hardy and Brendan McPhee all fell within 17 runs of each other, as the Gulls crumbled to 6-137.

Boyle continued to fight for Scarborough, boosting the total to 192 before running out of overs, and partners, as he ended the 40 overs unbeaten on 95 (nine fours and one six) from 111 balls.

Needing 193 for victory, the Bears began the run chase on fire. Aaron Todd and Manuel Hunwick navigated the conditions – and the bowlers – with aplomb, producing a crucial 73-run opening stand.

However, a Nicholas Maiolo-inspired spell of bowling saw Hunwick, Todd and Robert Guy fall within 24 runs of each other, as the Bears dropped to 3-97.

In a similar fashion to Scarborough’s innings, Mitchell Todd took it upon himself to anchor the innings for the Gulls, maintaining a steady hand and cool head under pressure.

Wickets continued to fall, despite Todd’s brilliant batting, with a surprising performance from Maiolo with the ball, taking three wickets after the Bears fell to 6-141.

A small 26-run partnership to Todd and Steve Tompsett had the Bears looking as though they were heading towards the total. However, at 6-167, Lance Morris exploded into action, taking two wickets and enacting a run-out.

The Bears had crumpled to 9-178, but Todd was still at the crease to give the visitors hope.

Unfortunately for the Bears, who managed to fight their way to 191, Todd was not on strike to face the final ball of the innings.

With two required for victory, number 11 batsman Ashley Jeffrey failed to score, handing Scarborough an epic one-run win.

Bayswater Morley will next take on Willetton at Hillcrest Park in round 5, while Scarborough will play Perth at Fletcher Park on Saturday at 11.40am.