Premier A Grade

ROUND 10 action was completed at the weekend in Cricket Latrobe Valley Premier A.

Day 2 saw a variety of results, with a couple of games heading down the outright path, while another maintained season 2023/24 tradition of being incredibly rain-affected.


EX STUDENTS continued to do Ex Students things.

The Sharks won outright against Mirboo North, continuing on their way that will likely lead to a top-two finish come season’s end.

Resuming at Terry Hunter Oval, the visitors were 9/70 in their first innings.

The Tigers added just one more run, before they found themselves bowling.

Ex Students had little trouble winning on first innings, getting there for the loss of just two wickets.

Sharks captain Jimmy Pryde made 37 at the top of the order, in a 58-run opening stand with Matt Dyke who scored 30.

Ex Students lost a few wickets going for quick runs trying to set up an outright, and Mirboo North bowlers were able to capitalise.

From 2/70, the Sharks found themselves 7/94 and only 23 runs ahead.

Some defiance from Andrew Matthews (35 off 72) and Adam Brady (20) however took the total to 152, giving Ex Students a lead of 81.

Darien Mathews bowled well for the Tigers, and got one for the mantlepiece, taking 5/45.

Anton Thomas also caused a few issues, grabbing 4/20 with his hoopers.

Mirboo North batted again, and managed 127 off 54.2 overs in their second dig.

Mark Graeme top-scored with 27, in a card that showed the top five all get to double figures.

As usual, the Sharks bowled as a collective, and saw wickets shared.

Michael Warne nabbed 3/17, Lee Stockdale 3/41 and Mitch Harris 2/23.

With time running out, it came down to Ex Students needing 47 to take maximum points.

Stockdale went out to bat with McMahon, and the pair slapped the required runs inside seven overs.

Stockdale made 25 not out off 21 balls, and McMahon an unbeaten 21 off 17.


MOE survived a huge scare against Raiders

Chasing 104 shouldn’t have presented too many challenges, but the Lions were forced to hang on for dear life after being 8/80.

Moe scratched their way to the total at Racecourse Turf, nudging every single run they could as wickets continue to fall.

Such a situation appeared a long way off when the scoreboard read 2/55, however, a major collapse of 3/0 soon had the sound of velcro tearing on a regular basis.

Raiders roared back into the contest thanks to Luke Thornton.

The Englishman ripped through the Lions middle order, taking four wickets and reducing them to 7/79.

With the game delicately poised, Moe all-rounder Callum Grant was forced to stay resolute.

Fortunately, he found a willing ally in number 10 Aaron Johnstone, who saw off 40 balls of his own.

Johnstone saw two balls he liked in the 55th, hitting both to the fence to secure first innings points by two wickets.

Grant ended not out on 22, while Thortnon collected plaudits for his 4/35 off 19 overs.

Left armer Boyd Bailey got the ball rolling for Raiders, taking the first two wickets, paving the way for George Chesire to come on and take 2/31 off 17.

Moe will play on Australia Day this Friday, and with Moe races the following day, it is expected some players will roll into that event.


TOONGABBIE need top order batsmen more than the Republicans need a decent candidate.

The Rams folded for just 44 at the weekend, falling well short of the 186 posted by Morwell.

As has been an unfortunate tale for Toongabbie this season, there just hasn’t been enough output from the top six.

Four blobs featured among the first eight batsmen in the Rams’ first innings, as only Sean Pickles was able to reach double figures with 18.

A score off 44 didn’t look likely when the home side was 1/29, but then the wheels well and truly fell off.

Toongabbie lost 4/0 in the ensuing collapse, as Tim Ford and Ross Whelpdale ran amok with four wickets each.

The Rams fared better in their second innings, and Pickles was able to find some form with an unbeaten 70.

Toongabbie at least staved off an outright, getting to 3/95 off 39 overs before the game was called.


CATS were saved by unexpected rain.

Taking on Glengarry at John Black Oval, CATS were 9/77, but the match failed to go into a second day due to the state of the pitch.

The Magpies will play on Australia Day this Friday in a marquee blockbuster against Ex Students – two teams expected to be in the Grand Final this season.


CHURCHILL had the bye.

Usual A Grader, Ryan Harvey went back and had a hit in the seconds, and promptly made 71 out of a total of 136.

The Cobras take on Raiders in A Grade this Saturday.


A Grade

CLEARLY not many people playing A Grade value occupying the crease.

The first day of Round 11 saw an alarming number of wickets fall, and all three matches look certain to lead to outright results this weekend.


ROVERS were only one down at the end of play – sort of.

While any captain would accept that in ordinary circumstances, what transpired at Duncan Cameron Memorial Park last Saturday was anything but.

Rovers in fact have little to worry about – they have already won on first innings.

How they achieved that though is a story-and-a-half.

After being asked to bat first by Imperials, the home side was shot out for just 71.

Little was anyone to know however, another 10 wickets were soon to fall, as the visitors managed a paltry 47 in reply.

The Rovers innings lasted just under 40 overs, and saw seven wickets fall either bowled or lbw.

Scott Aitken led the way for Imps, taking 4/10, working alongside Todd Mann (3/29) and Dilshan Thilakarathne (2/23).

What happened thereafter though was pure carnage.

The Imps batting card read more like a phone number, as only one batsmen reached double figures.

Ewan Williams tore through the middle order, and ended with astonishing figures of 4/5, while Rovers veteran Simon Duff (3/18) and Jack Lynch (2/5) were also productive.

Amazingly, Rovers batted a second time, and lost a wicket before the day was out, meaning 21 poles fell across the day.

The home side will resume at 1/14, with a lead of 38.

Key bat Dougal Williams will sub in on Day 2 for Rovers, with the game to be completed on Australia Day this Friday.


HOW the mighty are fallen.

And the weapons of war perished!

2 Samuel 1:27

Granted this writer never thought a bible verse would be needed in a cricket report, it appears Latrobe’s only hopes are a prayer.

The Sharks are currently 8/35 chasing 166 against Centrals.

The Lions batted first at Apex Park, and found troubles of their own, getting rocked and rolled inside 55 overs.

Mark Rawson and Tye Hourigan did most of the heavy lifting, making 47 and 45 respectively.

Latrobe captain Steve Freshwater put in an admirable effort, taking 5/20 off 9.5 overs, while Josh Wus picked up 3/32.

What followed with the bat though was scarcely believable.

Four ducks registered, three falling to the left arm swing of Centrals workhorse Marc Fenech.

Fenech had an absolute picnic, taking 6/8 in an absolutely crazy bowling card that saw him send down 17 overs, 12 of which were maidens.

With Fenech’s enconomy registering 0.47, the Sharks ended up scoring just one run extra than the overs they faced when the day was finally over.

Freshwater is 10 not out, and is facing the unenviable task of trying to delay the seemingly inevitable this Saturday.

While all clubs go through a turnover of players, for local cricketers who has been around the traps for a while, it has surely been a shock to the system to see Latrobe struggle as much as they have this season.

This can’t be the same Latrobe that use to hand out routine spankings to most Central Gippsland sides …

Latrobe struggling in cricket, Maffra struggling in footy … two things this writer never thought he’d be saying five years ago.


GORMANDALE continued its post-Christmas rise.

The Tigers need just four wickets to win on first innings against Traralgon West.

In a battle of the neighbours, the Tigers posted 205 at Stoddart Oval, and the Eagles are currently 6/93 in reply.

Gormandale will likely need to bat again after taking the last four wickets, as even with the Eagles’ current predicament, Traralgon West should reduce the deficit to under 100 runs.

Regardless, there should be enough time for the Tigers to go for an outright.


WILLOW GROVE had the bye.

The Wolves sent a couple of A Graders back to get a run in the seconds. A Grade skipper Darcy Walsh and English import Luke Payton took five wickets between them in the Wolves’ win over Imperials.