Drouin torn apart by fired-up Western Park

Riley McDonald steams in for Catani against Longwarry. 388168 Pictures: STEWART CHAMBERS

The expected fireworks between the top-two teams in the Warragul and District Cricket Association (WDCA) frizzled out on Saturday as one man stole the spotlight.

Fortunately for Drouin (49) its skipper Damon Healy won the toss and elected to bat first…but that was the end of the good news for the Hawks as Western Park (4/120) ran rampant.

The Hawks were embarrassed for the next 34.5 overs as Western Park’s Jason Croft (17.5-11-12-8) bagged a magnificent eight-wicket haul to give the ladder-leaders a vice-like grip on the contest.

Hawks number-seven Jarrod Saw (18 not out) was the only player to reach double-figures, with the remaining 10 players combining for 28 runs.

Croft, Tyler McDonald (1/26) and Ellis Whiteford (1/7) cut through the home team like a hot knife through butter, before opener Greg Munro (84 not out) cashed in later in the day.

Munro smashed 12 boundaries in his 126-ball vigil, that put his side 71 runs ahead by stumps on day one.

Fifth-placed Hallora (3/238dec) will be chasing outright points this Saturday after a strong batting display against bottom-placed Warragul (1/42).

Skipper Cameron McPhan (84) led the way for Hallora, with Brett Watkins (73 not out) and Harvey Jupp (35 not out) finishing off his fine work.

McPhan declared with 20 overs remaining in the day, with Harrison Radcliffe (15 not out) and Patrick Mulqueen (23 not out) seeing the Gulls through to stumps.

In other games this week, a stylish century from Matt Farthing (102) piloted third-placed Ellinbank (9/250) to what looks to be a winning score against Yarragon, who had Lahiru Jayakody (4/49) firing with the ball.

And fourth-placed Longwarry (263) is well placed against Catani after a true team-effort at Longwarry.

Seven players from the home side made scores of 26 or better, but none could go on to get fifty.

Yashan Samarasinghe (47), Isaac Carney (40) and former Clyde skipper Matt Aslett (35) came closest to raising their bats.

Cameron Brown (2/49), Riley McDonald (2/51) and Tyler Molloy (2/49) took two wickets each for Catani.

WDCA R13 (Day 1): Ellinbank 9/250 v Yarragon. Warragul 1/42 v Hallora 3/238dec. Longwarry 263 v Catani. Drouin 49 v Western Park 4/120.

Ladder: Western Park 60, Drouin 60, Ellinbank 46, Longwarry 43, Hallora 39, Catani 27, Yarragon 18, Warragul 3.