Final four takes shape in Margaret River Big Bash
It's getting close with just three rounds to go before the finals of the Margaret River Big Bash series.
The Margaret River Chicken Treat Big Bash has just three rounds to go and unless some sort of miracle occurs, the final four teams are set. There are just two points separating the top four, and this year the top two get a double chance in the play-offs, so from now on every week is a final.
GAME 33: Monday afternoon was set aside for a rematch between the Willow Warriors and the Sons of Pitches who had a rained off fixture two weeks ago. SOP batted first on a windy day that saw fires ripping through the Augusta-Deepdene area. It was slow going in difficult conditions and 2/31 was all SOP could muster in the power play, 1/46 was better in the second lot of 5 overs with the total at half time being 3/77. The third quarter saw 31 made and the final 30 balls only 26, SOP ending on 7/135. Brenno was the only batsman to get going when he retired on 31 from 18 balls and scoring the SOPs first ever 9 run net. Holmsey also retired but was more subdued taking 24 balls to reach 25. Hep' 2/4 and Garsty 2/10 the best of the Warriors bowling. Warriors only needed 6.76 runs per over for victory and Tinny 17 from 19 balls and Garsty 25 from 16 retired carried them to 0/44 after the power play. SOP started to tighten up fielding and bowling and kept the Warriors to 34 in the second quarter, and 31 in the third. Ozzie retired with 25 from 25 and it was heading for a tight finish. The Warriors were left with 29 runs from the last 30 balls with 6 wickets in hand. On the second ball of the final over Timmy hit a big 6 to secure a 5 run victory for the Warriors. Azza's 3/13 the best of SOP’s bowling.
GAME 41: Tuesday saw the SOP take on premiership favourite Madness on another hot windy afternoon. The Mad Men won the toss to bat first. An early wicket was the only joy for SOP as Madness belted everything and put together a run rate of 10.30 to be 1/103 at half time. Gods with 25 from 12 balls, Callum J 28 from 14 and and Breac 26 from 18 were all retired. The scoring in the second half was just as volatile with 99 runs being added to end up with a whopping 5/202, Menni also retired with 29 from 15. Pops and Super Glew opened the innings and had the run rate under control before Super was bowled by the hand of God at the end of the power play with the score on 1/52. In the second lot of 30 balls the runs kept coming on rate with 0/47 being scored and SOP were only 4 runs behind the required rate. Kurt the Kid retired with 25 from 24 and Brenno was caught for 24 from 16. The third quarter was the killer for the Pitches, adding just 32 for loss of 3 wickets. Now needing 73 from the final 30, Poly Farmer had a decent crack with a retired 25 from 17 but in the end SOP fell 26 runs short in an entertaining game of cricket with 378 runs scored in 2 hours.
GAME 42: The Finbats batted first against the Bush Choox, putting together 0/43 in the power play with Paps 23 from 18 and Harps 17 from 16. The Choox held things up in the second and third quarters with just 64 runs from 60 balls to be 4/108 at the change of ends. Blacky was the only retired batsman with 25 from 23 balls and 42 runs came in the final quarter to post a total of 7/150. CJ took 2/13 for the Choox with the ball. The Choox needed 7.51 runs per over to win and with 1/50 @10.0 rpo on the board after the power play they were well on their way. Muzza retired with 26 from 13 balls. The run rate slowed to 8.90 after ten overs and slowed even further to be 8.46 at 3/4 time with 2/127 on the board. Needing just 24 runs in the final 30 balls, C.J retired with 25 from 19 and the winning runs were scored in the 17th over with a 6 hit by Scooter. Choox went onto post a total of 4/176 and record a 26 run win that secured their place in the final for 2018.
GAME 43: Thursday’s clash was the Big Show who need a victory to have any chance at finals up against the Willow Warriors. The Big Show batted first and got a decent start with 1/44 on the board from the power play, Toggs belted four 4s before being bowled by Jamie Whal' playing in his first game of the season. The second quarter saw 50 runs added and the third quarter 39. With a 3/4 time score of 4/133, Thomo's 25 and Pizey's 29 had both retired and BS were on target for a belting target. The final 30 balls saw 51 scored and the Big Show had reached a target of 9/184 @ 9.20 runs per over. Mitch ‘Hep’ Payne was brilliant with the ball taking 3/6. The Warriors needed a flyer and that is exactly what Garsty gave them when he retired on 26 runs from 8 balls, the third fastest retirement of the season. At 1/52 after the power play and then 1/105 at half time the Warriors were doing everything right to chase down the total. Zac retired in a hurry with 25 from 12 balls and Bobcat followed retiring in 21 balls. The third quarter saw 57 runs scored with 28 runs from 10 balls from Hep's bat. In a Big Bash record run chase the winning runs came in the 18th. Ozzie seemed to be in a hurry retiring with 27 from 14 balls as Warriors went on to post a total of 4/201 when number CamBean hit a 6 on the final delivery.
GAME 44: Friday’s blockbuster between Master Batters and the Bashers had MB to the crease first and in immediate trouble at 2/2 after the first over. They were in total disarray at 4/30 at the end of the power play. The middle order stepped things up with 48 runs in the second and 52 in the third to be 5/130 at the 3/4 time change of ends. Clint Mac retired in 17 balls, Fisher scored 22 and Joycey retired in 12 balls to help MB recover. Nick McGovern belted 26 in the final quarter and retired on 15 balls. The tail failed and then the retired Clint 34 from 24 balls and Joyce who dominated with 37 from 15 balls helped MB to post a decent target of 9/171 @ 8.55 runs per over. Gary 2/12 and Rumesh 2/10 and some handy run outs the best of the Bashers. The Bashers needed a season high run total to win their third game of the season and Sandeep at the top of the order was intent on giving them a good start with a couple of 6s on his way to 21 from 13 balls before being bowled by Finchy. Rumesh Silva hit a quick-fire 25 from 9 balls before retiring with two 4s and two 6s to his name. Jacob SOC made 19 from 11 and partnered with Rumesh to put on 47 runs in 21 balls to give their team a sniff but when SOC departed after being caught and bowled by Fish, things went downhill fast. Bashers went from being 4/89 in the 11th over and in with a show of victory to all out for 129 in the 18th, 42 runs short of victory. Greg Fisher took 3/8 with the ball and two catches to be a worthy the Man of the Match.
THIS WEEK’S GAMES: Round 12 kicks off at 5pm Tuesday on the Western Oval with Willow Warriors taking on the Bashers. Wednesday Bush Choox will meet Madness in an important game that could give either team a double chance in finals. Thursday’s match between Sons of Pitches and Master Batters will see who will secure 6th. Friday will see Finbats take on the Big Show, who will be pushing for a miracle three-in-a-row to score a finals spot.