Muddies beat top place contenders
Wed 10 Feb
By Roy Weavers
After the Council’s miss-hap with the home ground in Port Douglas the Court House Hotel Port Douglas Mudcrabs B Grade cricket team had to travel up to Atherton for the second week of the two day ‘home’ game against United Cricket Club after the first week was washed out. Day two would therefore be reduced to 35 overs per side.
After Port's skipper, Josh McConnell, lost the toss which they very happy with as Port were looking to bowl first on a damp ground under some big grey clouds which produced lots of movement in the air for the opening bowlers in Powell and Keith 'Goldern Arm' Taylor. They bowled beautifully in the opening spell of seven overs each, (maximum allowed in the reduced game) to show how deep the Port Douglas bowling strength is.
Powell took the first wicket of the day in the third over when King took a very low quick flying edge at first slip with the score on just six runs. With the figures of no wickets for 3 runs after his third over Taylor was only a ball away from taking his first wicket after achieving some great leg cutters and inswingers. Indeed in his fourth over he broke through for his first wicket, which was followed up with a maiden with his second wicket coming in his sixth over removing the stubborn Mitchell Driver for 8. After the first 14 overs United were reeling at 3 for 26, with Taylor finishing his magnificent spell on 2 for 10 from his seven overs.
Matt Schiesser and Tony Gooding took over from where the opening bowlers left off and kept the pressure on the batters by bowling tight and straight. This was very well supported in the field with two great catches to ‘Dazzler’ Mison at backward point and one to Daniel Harris in the covers. To go with the great catching, two magnificent throws from King and Mison for run outs at crucial times, put even more pressure on their opposition.
Gooding picked up the first of his three wickets with the second ball of his first over with a clean outside edge which was taken by McConnell behind the stumps. He followed this wicket maiden by bowling extremely well to the big hitting United Captain Clark. Clark came to the crease at 6 for 48 and determined that his team needed runs badly and the only way that was going to happen was to attack.
With some tight bowling from Gooding and Schiesser, Clark eventually miss hit a big shot and was caught on 18 from Schiessers bowling, before he could do any real damage. Schiesser got his second wicket with a very good quick reaction caught and bowled when the ball was nearly past his head.
Schiesser finished with 2 for 19 off 6 overs. Before he could bowl his seventh over Tony Gooding bowled two glorious balls to catch the edge of Wards’ bat and then very next ball bowling Bartholomew for a golden duck. Gooding will now be on a hat-trick when he bowls his first ball in the next match.
United were bowled out for a total of 66 after 26 overs demonstrating the strength and depth of the bowling and fielding in the Port Douglas Mudcrabs side.
After a quick change-over McConnell and Arnell headed out to open the batting for the Muddies but McConnell made a unfortunate premature return after he slipped coming back for a second run on the fifth ball of the first over and ran himself out, leaving Port 1 for 1 off one over. This brought the in form Daniel Harris into bat for his first time in the number 3 position.
Arnell and Harris set about turning the strike over and edged their way to the total with a very nice mixture of clean boundaries and quick singles. When the score reached 1 for 30 the heavens opened and a down pour of about 20mil in 10 minutes caused play to stop for just over an hour.
When play resumed Port Douglas needed 37 runs in 30 mins to win the game.
Arnell played a couple of big shots before he was superbly caught by Clark at mid-on for 23. Harris was joined at the crease by Nathan King who wasted no time scoring a four with a beautiful cover driver off his third ball to keep the runs ticking over. King then struck a couple more four's and Harris hit a massive six to bring up a great win for Port Douglas in the 17th over before play ended. Harris finished with a man of the match performance of 31 not out and King finished on 19 not out with the team scoring 2 for 84 off 17 overs.
The next 2 day game is to be played at Loder Park against Atherton in the second last match of the season.