Port on verge of outright

Mon 15 Feb 

Port on verge of outright win

The Court House Hotel Port Douglas Mudcrabs Cricket Club made the long trek to Atherton on Sunday morning to play the second to last of the 2 dayer's for 2009/2010 season before the Finals series.


The Crabs were happy to bowl first after losing the toss again.  Batting first proved to be a disastrous decision from Atherton as the very first ball bowled by Dale Arnell was magic and took the edge of Barletta's bat for Nathan King to take a screamer of a catch at first slip to be the first of Arnell's four wicket haul.


Two maiden overs from Arnell generated another two wickets in his third over leaving Atherton reeling on 3 for 5 off 5 overs.  A superb piece of fielding by Manns created the run out with his accurate throw to McConnell who took the bails off cleanly for the 4th wicket. The fifth wicket came very quickly after when Powell bowled a lovely yorker picking up a well earned wicket. Arnells fourth wicket was a fast rising delivery moving away from the right hander when it caught the edge and rocketed to Taylor at third slip, who held on strongly to the flying ball.


Darryl Mison took over from Powell and took a wicket with his first ball when Gadsby leg glanced the ball to keeper McConnell.  Mison then followed up in his fifth over with beautiful straight delivery catching Micthcock on the crease and adjudged LBW.


The pick of the bowlers in this innings were Arnell with figures of 4 for 10 off 9 overs and Mison with 2 for 13 of 6 overs.


Port Douglas had therefore bowled Atherton out for 62 off 31.2 overs in their first innings.


With 63 to chase for first innings points the 'Crabs' were looking for a good quick start in their batting innings to put pressure on for the outright win. Unfortunately a decision did not go the way of opening batsman McConnell when his bat clipped his pad and was judged caught behind in the second over for 2 runs. Daniel Harris came to the wicket and very quickly carried on from where he had left off last week confidently dispatching a couple of balls for four.


In the third over Arnell hit a beautifully timed pull shot straight to the mid-wicket fielder and was also dismissed for 2 runs. With Harris and King at the crease the first innings points looked safe as both batsman had no trouble in increasing the run rate with every over easily passing Atherton's score to take first innings points. King looked in superb touch and was looking for more quick runs when he missed a big swing and was stumped for 23.


In the next couple of overs to follow, Harris managed to hit 12 runs to take him over the 50 run mark for the second time this season and when Skipper McConnell declared the innings on 84, he was on 52 not out.


With 55 minutes and 13 overs to bowl the Port Douglas Mudcrab's were going in for the kill to take the outright win.


Just as in the first innings Arnell opened the bowling and remarkably again took a wicket with his first ball as the batsman edged to McConnell behind the stumps. Powell had bowled well all day and was rewarded in the second innings taking 2 wickets for 3 runs off 8 overs. The final wicket of the day came when McConnell ran out Barletta from behind the stumps when he threw the stumps down with the batter still outside his crease, which was the second time he had done it for the game.


At the end of the first days play Atherton were 4 for 19 in their second innings. A couple of hours of clear weather next Sunday should see Port Douglas move even closer to their first outright win of the season.


Go Muddies . . . . .