31 March, 2023

Grand final glory for Caboolture Div 1 cricketers

Caboolture secured the Sunshine Coast Div 1 cricket premiership for season 2022-23 after having the better of arch-rival Maroochydore in the three-day grand final, which finished last Saturday at Caboolture Sports Cricket Club.

You little beauty! Caboolture’s Div 1 cricketers rejoice after their grand final triumph against Maroochydore.
You little beauty! Caboolture’s Div 1 cricketers rejoice after their grand final triumph against Maroochydore.

The result secured a “double” for Caboolture, which defeated Maroochydore in the limited overs decider back in November.

Caboolture had the upper hand last Saturday after the first two days were hard fought, with Caboolture dismissed for 138 before Maroochydore fell just eight runs short, following a last-wicket stand of 15.

Caboolture resumed last Saturday at 3/90 in its second innings, and sought to bat for as long as possible to deny Maroochydore the outright victory that the visiting team needed to secure the title.

The hosts scored slowly but effectively, and 34 runs were added to the overnight total when Glen Batticciotto departed for a gritty 50.

John Flew played a captain’s knock as he faced 87 balls for his 36 and showed patches of aggression, as he hit five fours and a six.

After scoring three not out from 35 balls late on day two, Carter Simpson scored 20 from 77 a week later before departing with the total on 152.

The visitors needed to rip through the rest of the batting quickly, but the hosts foiled them as Preston White provided stability. His innings featured two sixes, including a thumping pull shot which clattered onto the roof of the clubhouse.

Flew fell for 36 with the total on 191, and although Caboolture’s final four batters failed, White reached 51 not out as Caboolture lasted 69.3 overs on the final day and ground out a lead of 232 runs.

With only 24 overs to face, Maroochydore had virtually no hope of reaching the target.

Flew claimed a wicket in the first over, before the second wicket fell in the fourth over.

Despite some quick scoring from Zane Gilder and Luke McInnes, Maroochydore could not get close to the required run rate. The third wicket fell at 34, and later the visitors slid from 3/67 to 7/72.

Flew captured three wickets while White claimed two, as did Jack Williams.

Twenty-three runs were added for the eighth wicket, and there were eight overs remaining when Maroochydore captain Blaine Schloss – who was batting – offered to end the game early. The hosts complied, and soon the presentations followed.

White was named player of the grand final, having scored 29 and 51 not out, and taken 6/38 and 2/21.

With Caboolture having finished runner-up for the past three years, Flew relished going one better this time, and was impressed with the gutsy batting from his team on the last day of the grand final.

“I said to the boys (that) we’re not known for digging in there,” he said.

“We didn’t tick the runs over (as quickly as usual) but we did what we had to do, to bat for 100 overs.

“I’m really proud of the boys, with how they did that.”

Despite the slow run rate, Flew emphasised the need to keep scoring runs and to “bat as deep as you can for as long as you can”.

Although Maroochydore finished 138 runs shy of the target with only three wickets in hand, Flew referred to the first-innings margin and said his team virtually won by only eight runs.

Flew said “at the time” he was concerned that Caboolture’s first-innings total of 138 was not enough, but that he backed his bowlers to “bowl good tight lines” and defend the total while he sought to lead from the front.

“Once you get that (first-innings) lead, you’re in a whole better position,” he said.

“You’re not chasing the game.”


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