The Busselton Margaret River Cricket Association added another trophy to their cabinet this week with a comprehensive victory in the B-Section final at Country Week in Perth.
The win in Friday’s final against North Midlands at College Park capped an undefeated performance by the Association’s No. 1 side in Perth for senior Country Week under captain Ben Payne.
This means Busselton-Margaret River will be back in A-Section at Country Week next year.
“It was a great week – the boys were fantastic,” said team manager Pieter Bresser.
“This year it’s been a pleasure to manage the side, which had a lot of young players.
“I particularly want to thank the manager of the No. 2 side, Neil McCormack, and the scorers for the two sides, Matt Purcell and Mark Dittmar.”
Batting performances by Harvey Golding, Ben Lloyd, Danny Hatton and James Courtney-Bennett were cited by Bresser as highlights of the week for the side in B-Section, along with the bowling efforts of legspinner Joe Lowe, left-arm quick Matt Connaughton and veteran fast bowler Mat Kent.
The Busselton-Margaret River No. 2 side, which competed this year in C-Section, also did well under skipper Matty Braid.
They won their opening three games before fading to lose the semi-final on Thursday to Upper Great Southern and then Friday’s T20 playoff to Peel in dramatic circumstances to finish in fourth place.
“The young guys in the field were excellent.
“It was great to have Augusta players in the side this year – Braden and Tyson Warnke were outstanding, as was Blake Gillam in the field,” Bresser said.
Bresser said the behaviour of the players was also first-class during the week.
After Sunday’s opening game against Bunbury was played in furnace-like conditions, the cooler weather for the remaining games was appreciated by the cricketers, with some of the games on turf even being affected by accidental watering of sprinklers.
Harvey Golding’s innings of 153 for the No. 1 side against Bunbury in 42-degree heat at Iluka Sports Complex was singled out by Bresser as the individual highlight of the week.
Golding’s knock is one of the highest innings ever scored at Country Week by a Busselton-Margaret River cricketer, since the first team from the region was sent to Perth by the Yallingup Cricket Club, way back in 1926.
Senior Country Week Cricket Results
Day 1 (Sunday): Bsn-Marg River (1) 5-324 (60 overs) (H. Golding 153, D. Hatton 50, B. Lloyd 46, T. Thorp 29no, M. Ford 23) b Bunbury 119 (42 overs) (J. Lowe 4-25, D. Hatton 2-21, Kent 2-29, Connaughton 2-33).
Day 2 (Monday): Bsn-Marg River (1) 236 (49.2 overs) (B. Lloyd 48, J. Courtney-Bennett 43, D. Hatton 39, J. Lowe 29, M. Kent 22no, T. Thorp 21) b Eastern Goldfields 140 (44.2 overs) (J. Lowe 3-23, B. Payne 3-36, D. Hatton 2-25).
Day 3 (Wednesday): Bsn-Marg River (1) 8-221 (58 overs) (H. Golding 53, T. Evans 43, J. Courtney-Bennett 37, F. Oates 28no, B. Lloyd 24, D. Hatton 22) b Great Southern 92 (36.2 overs) (M. Kent 4-42, B. Payne 3-21, M. Connaughton 2-13).
Day 4 (Thursday – Semi-Final): Bsn-Marg River (1) 6-139 (37.0 overs) (T. Evans 32, H. Golding 27, D. Hatton 20no) b South Midlands 138 (55.2 overs) (D. Hatton 4-29, M. Connaughton 2-22).
Day 5 (Friday – Final): Bsn-Marg River (1) Bsn-Marg River (1) 8-250 (60 overs) (B. Lloyd 49, J. Courtney-Bennett 37no, D. Hatton 35, T. Evans 33, H. Golding 24, T. Thorp 21) b North Midlands 149 (50.1 overs) (J. Lowe 3-53, M. Connaughton 2-32).
Day 1 (Sunday): Bsn-Marg River (2) 155 (36 overs) (J. Courtney-Bennett 59, T. Warnke 36, K. Dittmar 21, N. Ritchie 21) b Fortescue 67 (26.1 overs) (B. Warnke 6-7, M. Braid 2-25).
Day 2 (Monday): Bsn-Marg River (2) 162 (46 overs) (C. Dudley 44, M. Walker 42, B. Warnke 33) b Peel 139 (46.4 overs) (B. Warnke 4-35, J. Bennison 2-15, M. Braid 2-47).
Day 3 (Wednesday): Bsn-Marg River (2) 8-160 (43.1 overs) (M. Walker 45no, T. Warnke 40, N. Ritchie 30) b Eastern Districts 157 (49.2 overs) (J. Trewren 3-23, M. Braid 2-7, T. Warnke 2-18, B. Warnke 2-42).
Day 4 (Thursday – Semi-Final): Bsn-Marg River (2) 127 (47.4 overs) (N. Ritchie 32, B. Warnke 25) lost to Upper-Great Southern 7-175 (50 overs) (B. Warnke 3-35, M. Braid 3-46).
Day 5 (Friday – Playoff for 3rd and 4th): Bsn-Marg River (2) 5-165 (20 overs) (M. Braid 61, B. Christmas 37, K. Dittmar 26no) lost to Peel 7-171 (20 overs) (J. Bennison 2-16).
First all-women’s cricket match for region
THE first ever all-women’s cricket match to be held in the Busselton-Margaret River region has been set for Saturday, February 9, to coincide with the grand finals of the men’s T20 competition at Barnard Park.
The women’s game is being billed as a historic occasion for members of the local community, and is planned as the start of a regular women’s cricket competition in the region.
YOBS Cricket Club has indicated that it can already provide a women’s team for the day, and moves are being made to find enough women to form a composite side to play against YOBS.
“Any girls or women who are interested in playing are welcome to rock up at Barnard Park at 10am on February 9 to attend training in the nets before the game,” said Busselton-Margaret River Cricket Association president Pieter Bresser.
“Western Fury have indicated that they will be sending one of their women’s players down from Perth to help promote the day, and regional cricket officer Rachel Norman from Bunbury has done a lot of work to get this moving,” he said.
“Hopefully we will be able to form at least 3 sides next year for a women’s competition in Busselton-Margaret River to start up.”
The T20 grand finals on February 9 will see A-Grade, B-Grade and C-Grade men’s grand finals playing for the second annual T20 competition trophies.
An under-15s game will start at 8am, followed by the women’s game at 11.30am and the C-Grade final at 2pm on the synthetic oval.
The main turf oval will see the B-Grade final start at noon, followed by the A-Grade final at 3.30pm.
Matty Braid (A-Grade) and Karl Clively’s Cricket Centre (C-Grade) will be among the trophy donors on the day.
- Allan Miller