Saints struggle against Rhinos

November 15, 2017

In round five of the Murray Valley Cricket Association Division One competition, Berrigan travelled to Deniliquin to take on the Rhinos.

Unfortunately for the Saints they had a late withdrawal from the team and only were able to field 10 players.

Winning the toss the Saints’ skipper Lachie Pyle had no hesitation in batting on a well prepared wicket.

Berrigan’s openers Connor Thornton and Andrew Parr started slowly against some good seam bowling from the opening bowlers Ben Irwin (0/13) and Chris Baines.

Thornton was given a life at first slip, and the Saints pair started to tick the run rate over. However with the score on 31, Parr was caught for 18 off the bowling of Baines (2/21).

Pyle joined Thornton in the middle but it wasn’t long until Baines struck again with a leg cutter clean bowling the captain for four and the Saints were 2/38.

Two runs later and Thornton (16) was back in the pavilion, caught off the bowling of Phil Rotherham (1/13).

Berrigan’s two new batsmen, Graeme Parr and Zach Nugent, both composed themselves and got the Saints back on track with some exciting batting.

Rob Heane (1/24) eventually broke the partnership, with Nugent caught in the deep for 20 and the Saints were 4/64.

Brad Loats joined Parr in the middle and added another eight runs before Deni captain Jack Tonta (2/19) had the latter caught in the deep for nine and the Saints were reeling at 5/72 after 24 overs.

Fraser Haintz was the new man in for the Saints, but the introduction of Tim Hillier (2/8) into the attack didn’t do any favours for the visitors. He clean bowled Loats for six and then Harley Middleton for a duck and the Saints were 7/81.

Ricky Khurana was the next man in and started strongly adding another 10 runs to the team score before Haintz was caught by Tonta in the deep for seven and the Saints now 8/91.

John O’Neil was the last man in for the Saints and his batting partner soon had the young batsman scampering through for quick singles.

However when the Saints reached 99 the pair took a more risky single, which had O’Neil caught short of his crease, run out for a duck by Heane. Berrigan finished all out for 99.

With a small score to defend, the Saints’ opening bowlers — Pyle (0/24) and Middleton (1/38) — had to bowl tight lines to Denis’ openers Rotherham and Chris Pyle.

But the Rhinos batsmen started well, taking no risks while still scoring a reasonable run rate.

A change in the Berrigan attack saw Loats pick up the wicket of Pyle for 16, caught at mid-wicket and the Rhinos were 1/42.

Nugent (1/17) came into the attack and it wasn’t long before he had Rotherham trapped in front for 17 and Deniliquin was now 2/54.

Another bowling change saw Graeme Parr (1/28) claim Heane for 11 and the home side were shaky at 3/54.

This brought Tim Hillier and his son Harry to the crease and the two batted smartly together. After a couple of dropped catches from the Saints the pair guided their side past Berrigan’s score in the 26th over.

The two continued, putting on a 92-run partnership before Harry was caught off the bowling of Middleton for 17 and the Rhinos were 4/146.

Tonta joined Hillier in the middle and worked the ball around to keep Hiller on strike.

Another change saw Khurana bowling some spin which had an instant result with Tonta caught behind by Andrew Parr for four.

Cameron McDonald was the new man in with Hillier, helping the veteran get to his century which included 14 fours and three sixes.

As a consolation, Khurana (2/13) picked up McDonald, bowled for two off the last ball of the innings.

The Rhinos finished at 6/187 after their 40 overs.

This week the Saints take on Tocumwal at home.

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