Autumn is not only preparation for winter sports but heralds the finals for the local junior cricket competition.
Two teams who are very familiar with each other are the Wollondilly Gold and Crookwell under 14’s. They completed the home and away season just one week ago with a closely fought match played at ‘The Grange’ in Crookwell.
If Wollondilly were going to win their sudden death semi-final then they would have to find a different way of going about things in an effort to put Crookwell off their game.
On a glorious morning at Wexted Oval the two captains, Cameron Herd from Crookwell and Leigh Chalker from Wollondilly made their way to the centre for the toss and it was Wollondilly who won the toss and sent Crookwell into bat.
The plan was well executed as Crookwell fell for 125 runs after some good bowling from the home team. Logan Watts was the main destroyer with a 4 wicket haul.
He was ably supported by Archie Wearne who picked up 2 vital wickets and Sebastian Lesniak who also chimed in with 2 wickets.
At one stage Crookwell were going along quite nicely and looked as though they were going to post a big score until Abdul Raheem ran out the dangerous Cameron Herd (just short of another half century) right on the drinks break.
This was the second run out of the Crookwell innings as Nick Yeadon executed a direct hit to start the fall of wickets. After drinks, Crookwell could not maintain the momentum they had built and soon had all their batsmen back in the pavilion.
Wollondilly needed to get off to a good start, having to face 15 overs to end the first day’s play.
All of a sudden the loss of Logan’s wicket set the Wollondilly dressing room on edge as Raheem’s brother, Kareem made his way to the crease. A nice little partnership ensued until Kareem was given out leg before, trying to turn a ball to fine leg.
This brought Archie Wearne to the crease and there was a gasp of disbelief when he fell LBW to Cameron Herd on his very first ball, putting Cameron on a hat-trick.
The fall of these two quick wickets lifted Crookwell but the very calm Nick Yeadon had other ideas.
With 77 runs required and three wickets back in the sheds Wollondilly still have some work to do which will make day two a tense affair as the winner goess through to the final and the loser looking forward to next season.