By Nick Creely
DDCA TURF 2 AND 3
REVIEW – ROUND 9
It was an incredible result for a side starting to really mount its case as the team to beat in Turf 2.
Dingley are continuing to show it’s a class above with bat, ball and in the field after completely dismantling Cranbourne and moving 12 points clear on top of the table.
The Dingoes showed little mercy to the Eagles at Souter Oval on Saturday in the first round after Christmas, winning by a whopping 144 runs in a 40-over match.
The home side didn’t have it all their own with the bat after winning the toss, and were at one stage 2/13 before recovering nicely to finish 8/183 off its 40 overs, with the impressive Flynn McGaw scoring a vital 34 in the middle-order.
Reliable seamer Martin Kelly (3/28) was the pick of the bowlers for the Eagles.
The momentum carried through from a terrific late surge with the bat for the Dingoes, who were merciless as they rolled the Eagles for a meek 29 in just over an hour.
And the dominance came through Milan Rathnayaka (7/18), who bowled magically in one of the great spells of the season, and partnered with Calvin Barlow (3/8), gave the visitors little chance of mounting a case for victory.
In a tough loss for the Eagles who sit sixth but are just out of the percentage out of the top-four, no batsmen was able to reach double-figures.
Down at Perc Allison Oval, Beaconsfield banked a vital win in its finals aspirations against Narre North.
The Tigers showed great intent with the ball to roll the Rams for just 99, with Jason Dodd (3/17) and skipper Jack Benbow (3/21) doing some great work through the middle period to cause plenty of problems for the visitors.
A strong 65-run opening stand from Brendan Johnson (52 not out) and Callan Tout (25) stole the game away from the Rams, with the home side getting the job done with eight wickets still left in the shed.
Brad Miles also chimed in late to finish with 20 not out, while Sikhie Samarasekera (1/19) battled hard with the ball for the Rams.
Narre Warren drew its clash with Lyndale at Sweeney Reserve, while Parkmore Pirates’ clash with Dandenong West was also unable to get on.
With just six points separating fourth from seventh and with the finals race wide open, Beaconsfield will host Parkmore Pirates in another crunch loss on Saturday, Narre North will welcome Dandenong West, Cranbourne and Lyndale will be hoping to keep in touch when they face off at Casey Fields, while Narre Warren face a tough assignment against Dingley away from home.
In an early-taste of what’s to come ahead of finals, Parkfield and Keysborough – the top two sides on the ladder – faced off in an absolute thriller at Dunblane Road.
Parkfield however, got the job done by just six runs to show nerves of steel in front of its home crowd.
Batting first, the home side amassed 9/142 off 40 overs, with skipper Stephen Cannon (42) and Tanil Dehigaspitiya (37) showing great composure to guide the team to a reasonable total to defend.
Bowling three maidens in a superb eight over spell, Daniel Banhidi (3/23) was in terrific touch with ball in hand to be the pick of the bowlers for the Knights.
It appeared as if the Knights would have the chase within its reach after notching up a strong start with the blade, but an inspired spell from Nicholas Jeffery (4/18) was the match-winner, with the Knights’ middle and lower order crumbling to be all-out for 136 with just over two overs to spare.
In the clash between Berwick Springs and Lynbrook, the two finals hopefuls also played out a thriller.
The Lakers were well served by Jay Walia (42) at the top of the order, but were rolled for 133, with Stephen Brooks (5/14) completely dismantling the middle order with a decisive spell for the Springs.
Brooks then backed up his heroics with the ball with a brilliant 53, but the Lakers dug deep to bowl the home side out for 126, just eight runs shy of a win.
And in the final match of the round, Springvale (8/286) enhanced its claim for a finals spot with a comfortable win against Coomoora (168).
The match between Silverton and Fountain Gate at Fotheringham Reserve was abandoned, with both sides sharing the points.