SOUTHLAND club cricket’s top four teams and finals positions were revealed after the 15th and final round-robin matches of the 50-over premier league on Saturday.
Old Boys are the top qualifier and will play second-placed Appleby this Saturday with the loser getting a second chance the following week against the winner of the Waikoikoi and Metropolitan semi-final.
Marist and Southland Boys’ High School (SBHS) were the two teams out of contention before the weekend and were by chance drawn to play each other in their last round-robin match.
SBHS narrowly beat Marist by nine runs. Nick Brown scored 38 valuable runs, but it was Reid Murray who dominated the innings with an unbeaten 80 runs as the pupils got through to 226 for 9 from their 50 overs.
The Marist run chase got off to a good start thanks to Hamish Stafford (44) and Ethan Yeo (45). After Reid Murray bowled Shaun Fitzgibbon (57) out in the 48th over, the boys were able to quickly take the final two wickets to seize the win.
Waikoikoi beat Metropolitan by 33 runs in Invercargill. Welby Reed scored an unbeaten 79 runs as Waikoikoi posted 202 before being bowled out in their 43rd over.
The Metro batsmen then got off to a bad start, losing their first four wickets for 30 runs. Opening bowler Liam McFaul did most of the damage with figures of three wickets for 22 runs. Tail-enders Anjelo Shaman (28), Daniel George (23) and Jason Osborne (33) added some respect to the Metro innings.
Old Boys trounced Appleby by 145 runs. Old Boys’ openers Brayden Thomas (59) and Chris Case (54) put on a 111 run partnership. Liam McWilliam (27), Brendan Domigan (26) and Amarpreet Singh (31) also helped build the total of 240.
Sam Downing was the best of the Appleby bowlers, taking four wickets for 30 runs. The Appleby batsmen never raised a gallop and were bundled out for 92. Case took three wickets for 24 runs from his 10 overs.
The division one competition had its semi-finals on Saturday.
Central Western snuck past the Old Boys B team in Winton with just one wicket and five overs to spare. Captain Dave Lindsay was unbeaten on 30 when the locals reached the target of 134. Te Anau beat the Appleby B team by 80 runs in their semi-final.
Te Anau will host Central Western in the division one final this Saturday, while the Waikoikoi and Metropolitan B teams are the division two finalists.