BLG BOYS AT ACCC
At the 2018 Australian Country Cricket Championships just completed in Geraldton, WA, no less than six Barossa and Light cricketers competed.
In the squad were three players from the South Gawler Cricket Club: left arm spinners David Golder and Sean Nottle and top order left hand batsman Chris Graser.
The squad also included ACCC eight-time veteran Ben Parish from Freeling, Kapunda’s Joey Brown and Mallala all-round sportsman Jake Birchmore.
The side finished a commendable third in the Twenty20 portion but after a brilliant win in the first round of the 50-over one-day games, lost their last four matches, falling away badly against Victoria and NSW in rounds nine and 10.
Parish started with an important 27 in the win over Vic Country in the opening T20 match and made 54 in the same form of the game against the EAP, along with 41 in the thrilling win against Queensland Country in the first game in the 50-over format.
The highlight for Joey Brown was his match winning 21 not out and two wickets in the same game against the Bulls.
David Golder, at 34, proved to be one of the finds of the championships finishing with 12 wickets at an average of 20.9 run per scalp, including best figures of 3/ 10 from three overs against Vic Country in the opening game.
Nottle was also productive with nine wickets at an average of 28.8 and a best of 3/23 in that thriller against Queensland. Both Graser and Birchmore struggled with the bat across the course of the championships, both averaging less than 10.
The Barossa and Light side coached by Anthony Prior had strong wins over Yorke Peninsula and the Mid North to start the 2018 Country Cup held from January 8 to 11.
In Barossa and Light’s opening game against the Yorke Peninsula, B&L made 5/157 with skipper Austin Poulton scoring 74 not out while Riley Greenlees was run out for 35 and Miles Harvey made 27. This group bowled out Yorke Peninsula for just 48 with Kasey Fowler taking the extraordinary analysis of four wickets for three runs from five overs.
Against the Mid North at Kapunda Oval, the Barossa side contained their opponents to 111 with Caleb Schwartz collecting three wickets while spinner Poulton finished with 2/5 from eight overs, including five Maidens and Liam Tappert claimed 2/16. They collected the win in the 31st over with the Greenlees remaining 45 not out while Will O’Brien was also undefeated on 23.
Round three at Saddleworth Oval was an intriguing and low scoring tie. B&L were bowled out for 443 from just 35.2 overs and Murray Districts made the same score having faced only 20.4 overs.
In the grand final the Eyre Peninsula finished on 9/137 from their 45 overs with Poulton claiming 3/19, while Tappert finished with 2/15 from five overs and Fraser Mann claimed 2/19 from his 5.5 over spell.
At 1/100, the Barossa boys looked like they were cruising to victory but they lost their last nine wickets for 25.
HEAD LEADS FROM THE FRONT
Having just turned 24 at the end of December, Travis Head has now taken on the Strikers T20 captaincy for the first time and it hasn’t hindered performances.
Since taking over the leadership role, his performances have included a match winning 53 in his last game against the Melbourne Stars.
He also produced solid scores of 44 against the Hurricanes, 29 against the Sydney Sixers and 36 in the opening game against the Sydney Thunder on December 22.
As expected he was selected in the Australian one-day team for their series against the old enemy, which started at the MCG on Sunday.
Even with their loss against the Scorchers at Alice Springs on the weekend, the Strikers are well placed in second position with five wins and just the two losses.