Finals may be out of reach for CATS and Centrals but valuable morale-boosting points are still up for grabs when the two meet in round 12 of the Traralgon and District Cricket Association this weekend.
CATS faced a formidable opponent in ladder leader MTY Raiders in round 11 and were never up to task.
The defending premier stacked on 218 in the opener and the target proved insurmountable for CATS in reply as they were skittled for 141.
Centrals suffered a similar fate at the hands of Glengarry and were overcome in the run chase after setting 164.
When the sides met in round one earlier this season CATS cantered to a win after being set a target of 121.
Ben Julin starred with ball in hand for CATS and finished with three wickets while Rory Hare top scored with 53.
This weekend’s match will tip off from noon at John Black Oval in Traralgon.
Churchill v Gormandale
Churchill will be eager to return to the winners’ list this weekend when it faces Gormandale on the back of a loss to defending premier Ex Students at George Cain Oval.
The Cobras are poised in third spot on the TDCA ladder with 43 points, five shy of Ex Students in second, and four clear of Glengarry in fourth.
Finals aren’t out of the question for Gormandale as it sits three points outside the top four in seventh.
Churchill fell just short of rival and fellow flag fancy Ex Students in round 11 after narrowly missing out on a reverse victory.
Gormandale enjoyed the bye in round 11 and will need to make the most of fresh legs if they are to push Churchill this weekend.
The round one encounter between the sides was a low-scoring affair, with Churchill’s benchmark of 152 enough to get it over the line.
Ben Kearns (41) and Matt Harvey (33) led the way for Churchill in the win and will be crucial players in this weekend’s match alongside the opening pair of Brendan Mason and Jesse Giardina.
Ex Students v Traralgon West
Ex Students and Traralgon West headline the heaviest mismatch of round 12 as second plays 11th at Traralgon Recreation Reserve from noon.
The defending premier heads into the round 12 fixture against winless Traralgon West with a bit more bite than usual after a morale-boosting win against Churchill at the weekend.
Traralgon West put up a fight on day one of its round 11 encounter with Rovers and looked primed to notch its first win in nearly five years but a valiant fight back from the home side on day two meant West’s woes continued.
Ex Students was unrelenting in its round one encounter with Traralgon West and cruised to a win in the run chase with just two wickets down.
Glengarry v Imperials
With just seven points separating third and seventh on the TDCA A grade ladder, this weekend’s match up between Glengarry and Imperials will have serious ramifications as far as finals are concerned.
After defeating Centrals in round 11, Glengarry regained its spot inside the top four on 39 points while Imperials are two points off the pace in sixth, equal on points with Toongabbie, which they defeated in round 11.
When the sides met in round one earlier this season Imperials were no match for Glengarry and a Sam Marks’ top score of 87 led the away side to a win.
Rovers v Toongabbie
Rovers overcame a slow start on day one against Traralgon West at the weekend to notch a win while Toongabbie fell victim to Imperials in its round 11 fixture.
Rovers have done their dash for season 2017/18 and sit in ninth spot on just 12 points, a gargantuan 19 points behind CATS in sixth.
Toongabbie is locked in a battle for fourth with Glengarry and Imperials.
When the sides met in round one Toongabbie stacked on 168 in the opener before bundling Rovers out for just 65.
This weekend’s game will tip off from noon at Duncan Cameron Park.