CHAIRMANS GRAND FINALS SUMMARY AND TIPS
The big dance is on this weekend and bragging rights in all 11 grades are up for grabs for the next 6 months with every championship pennant on the line. Who can handle the pressure the greatest? The semi–finals turned some surprise results in the top grades and predictable results towards the lower grades (if you followed my tips I finished with 13 from 22 - about 60% so this week I plan to increase that to an optimistic 75% winners). Lets see who I can put the KISS OF DEATH on in the grand final review and my tips.
GRADE 1- High Wycombe CC v Swan Valley CC- Scott Reserve
Swan Valley completed an absolute demolition of the minor premiers Wembley Districts on their home deck last weekend. Once again as he has done time and time again Captain /Coach Phil Adams stepped up on the big stage scoring an amazing 138 from 137 balls reading the pitch and the situation perfectly setting a difficult runs chase of 230 for the hosts who gave it their best shot but came up well short of the mark and for the third year running drop out of the race.
High Wycombe got back to their home wicket where they seem to play their best cricket and routed Bentley early who never gave a yelp with the bat and were consequently bowled our for 96- A terrible and disappoint batting display as their seasons performance with the bat was much batter than that miserable performance. High Wycombe appeared confused in how to go about the chase and lost early wickets in the process on day one before Bentley decided to come back on day two in a spirited decision to push for an outright. It only gave Captain Chris Kirkham (60 n.o)the opportunity to get some much need centre wicket practice along with Ranil Damminka (54 n.o) and High Wycombe continued into the grand final with ease.
This week will be a different story for both club as both clubs will be full of confidence and more than fancy their chances against one another- let there be no mistake that the fierce rivalry will be again on show come this weekend as the two eastern suburbs teams lock horns in what is considered to be as a super contest. Swan Valley will recall the terrible loss in last year final and High Wycombe will be out to prove to themselves and the rest of the competition that the step from 2nd Grade last year into first grade was no luck and it can be done were many other clubs who over the years have stepped up into the top grade the following year only to fail dismally.
SWAN VALLEY-BATSMEN - Phil Adams (701 runs @ 58.4 ave) as I have stated all season is clearly on of the best batsmen in the association and barometer for the Valley and showed his class last weekend against a strong bowling attack, he will once again look to put a steady attack to sleep early and dominate from the front. Stan Harrison (385 runs @ 29.6 ave) and Adam Faulkner (324 runs @ 32.4ave) will be other batsmen to watch for along with Zac McBride (192 runs for the season) who can blast bowling attacks if required.
SWAN VALLEY-BOWLERS - Matt Weston again proved last week why he has been a grand servant for the ‘Valley” capturing 6/49 from 26 overs (a season tally of 22 wickets @ ave of 22.8). He has been greatly assisted by opening bowler Nikhil Mugi (11 wickets @ 33.5 ave) who had a slow start to the season but is peaking at the correct time of year. Other bowlers to watch out for will be right arm medium fast and English Import Joe Lavender (25 wickets @ 21.1 ave) and the spin of Adam Falkner and Liam Davies (16 wickets @23.3 ave).
HIGH WYCOMBE-BATSMEN - Jamie Scardifield (608 runs @ 55.3 ave) has had a stella season winning the association batting ave and aggregate and will be determined to emulate his feats earlier
in the season making a fabulous century in hostile territory at Swan Valley. Batting at home he should find a great confidence and can bat for long periods and accumulate runs with ease and little risk. Aron O’Conner (427 runs @33.8 ave) has been a great partner for Scardifield and his team and along with Skipper Chris Kirkham (143 runs) who found some form in the semi final. The batting looks deep which will assist them if they are under pressure early.
HIGH WYCOMBE BOWLERS - This has always been considered the clubs Achilles heel however they have continued to defy the critics ( and I can confess I have been one of them) and they get the job done. Reece Jones has shows age shall not weary him and has produced an outstanding season with the ball winning the association average (28 wickets @ 12.64). Left arm wrist spinner Ranil Damminka ( 26 wickets @ 15.19) in his second season with the club is now coming to terms with playing on wickets here in Western Australia and will be a key to building pressure on Adams and the SV batting line-up. Throw in Ben Obrien, Slade Tillemans, and captain Kirkham and the depth and variety starts to flourish for the home side.
In what looks to be a ripping contest this weekend for me the pain of being thrashed in last years grand final will still linger in the minds of the Valley boys and will be the edge they need if Phil Adams cannot be controlled with the bat by High Wycombe.
TIP - SWAN VALLEY
GRADE 2- Subiaco Marist CC v Kalamunda CC- John Lucas Oval
Subiaco Marist completed a demolition job over tuart Hill in their semi final last week and continues to go from strength to strength peaking when it counts. Kalamunda showed it was not a one trick pony finding its best form with both the bat and the ball to restrict the strong Ocean Ridge team to 166 and after a top order glitch found unlikely heroes in Aiden Hodge (61) and veteran Steve Pabst (54) for a 110 run partnership to clinch victory and a place in the grand final.
SUBIACO MARIST-BATSMEN- Nayana Palamandadige (587 runs @ 48.9) again showed his value with 65 and 93 no last week and will be the catalyst for SM in building or chasing a total. Jake Steed (519 runs @ 51.90 ave) and captain Scott Gaynor (239 runs) are also in good form and bolster the top order and could set a total to far for the opposition to chase.
SUBIACO MARIST-BOWLERS- Adam Wray (35 wickets @ 11.89) has been the key to the success of Subiaco Marist finishing on top of the ladder this season and along with Michael Thacker (19 wickets @ 14.63), Josh Richards (17 wickets @ 12.9 ave) and the Xfactor of Callum Hinton (15 wickets @ 15.3) will be more than enough to cause problems for the ‘Kala’ batsmen.
KALAMUNDA BATSMEN- Jonathan Clifton (554 runs @ 42.62 ave) has completed a very solid year for both his team and represented the association in both the Cricketwest and the State-wide cup winning the player of the series. First year recruit Koshan Jayawickarama (418 runs @ 29.86 ave) has been the find of the year for the club with both bat and ball and his top-order aggression if used in a controlled manner could place enough pressure on the home team. Aiden Hodge (259 runs @ 25.9 ave) finally found some form when it counts and along with club stalwart Tim Overton (274 runs @ 34.25 ave) could post a good score.
KALAMUNDA BOWLERS- Both Koshan Jayawickarama (40 wickets @ 12.85) and Tim Overton (31 wickets @13.90 ave) have had outstanding seasons with the ball and along with Jonathan Armstrong who chimed in last week with a great return (9 overs 3/28). Steve Pabst (season total of 20 wickets @ 13.8 ave) can also be called on to tie up an end and cause trouble for the Subiaco Marist team.
In what looks to be once again a very even contest on paper it will be the team who can control their nerve, soak up the pressure and deliver when it counts. I witnessed this first hand during the T20 grand final earlier this year and the Subiaco Marist team delivered in spades beating a grade 1 team-
I think they can deliver again. No withstanding this if Kalamunda believe in their ability and play as a team there is no reason not to also consider them a huge chance.
TIP- SUBIACO MARIST
GRADE 3- Murdoch University Melville CC v Balcatta CC- Murdoch University West
A couple of minor upsets in the 3rd grade last weekend with both the two top team being bustled out of the semi finals with Balcatta who have come from absolutely now where early in the season topple the hot favourites Wembley Districts and Murdoch University Melville using their depth and experience to post a score too great for High Wycombe to chase down.
MURDOCH UNIVERSITY MELVILLE BATSMEN- Opener Nick Bonner (combined season tally of 295 runs @ 24.6) had spent a good part of the season in first grade and will be crucial in the MUM innings getting off to a solid start. Captain Daniel Lake (485 runs @ 40.42 ave) won the association batting aggregate and Ben Duggan (503 runs @ 41.9 ave) along with middle order wicket keeper and veteran Rod Sammutt (season tally of 277 runs) will display good depth.
MURDOCH UNIVERSITY MELVILLE BOWLERS- Andrew Haning (22 wickets @ 9.86) looks the pick of the front line bowlers and with Brandon Walsh (16 wickets @16.5 ave) and Aron Goodwin look the keys to controlling the Balcatta batting attack.
BALCATTA BATSMEN- The top order hasn’t fired for them this season however their middle order with Gaurav Tawari (season tally of 478 runs @ 34.1) - 53 in the semi final along with skipper Ben Allen making 65 and Josh Giacoppo (Season tally of 197 runs @32.8 ave) making 51 shows they have plenty of batting talent and depth.
BALCATTA BOWLERS- Here is where I believe their strength really lies after knocking over a very strong batting line-up last weekend with the likes of Johny Budalich (season total of 35 wickets @ 14.6 ave) taking 4/21, Hassan Khadim (season tally of 20 wickets @ 20.8) and Muhammad Saeed ( season 26 wickets @ 18.9) hold the key to the match result.
A great semi final win with both sides equally worthy of championship glory but for me the momentum is with the Northern Suburbs side and have real come into their own taking up the challenge up to every opposition in the last month
GRADE 4-Western Suburbs CC v Fremantle Mosman Park CC- College Park West
In a very even grade where 1 game separated the top four positions and Western Suburbs did enough to ink out a spot in the GF with a solid performance again Subiaco Marist who just couldn’t get started with the bat. Fremantle Mosman Park also struggled to reach 100 but their bowling was outstanding to say the least and cleaned –up top side Swanbourne in emphatic fashion with legend “Shep” the main destroyer.
WESTERN SUBURBS BATSMEN- middle order batsman Clinton O’Neill (season 347 runs @ 31.55) is the key for WS along with youngster Michael Davis (237 runs @ 23.7 ave) to partner up and bat for long periods.
WESTERN SUBURBS BOWLERS- Peter Richer (24 wickets @ 8.8 ave) did the damage in the semi final taking a seasons best 6/24 and along with Matthew Horton who also took his best seasons figures of 3/10 will again look to figure prominently on the weekend. Andrew Dennis (19 wickets @ 9.63 ave) will also be another to watch with the new ball.
FREMANTLE MOSAMAN PARK BATSMEN- Tim Bott (337 runs @28.08) won the association batting aggregate and needs to deliver on the big stage this weekend. David Barrett (248 runs @ 22.5 ave) and Mitchell Smith (239 runs @ 21.73) will also be relied upon to bat time and accumulate runs.
FREMANTLE MOSAMAN PARK BOWLERS- you cannot go past this magnificent bowler and warrior in Dave “Shep” Sheppard.- He was instrumental in winning the semi final for his team taking 7/30 from 23.3 overs with 10 maidens- what more can you say. Jordan Lukan produced a little cameo 7 overs 6 maidens 3 wickets for 4 runs and may need to do the same if called on by skipper Craig Beard.
If Fremantle Mosman Park can bat first and make 150 plus they may see this one home for the ‘Pirates”, but if the home side, with what is expected to be a huge crowd in attendance, can make full use of playing on their own wicket might be enough to swing the result their way. That big win from the pirates last week was too good to ignore for me.
TIP- FREMANTLE MOSMAN PARK
GRADE 5- Murdoch University Melville CC v Wembley Districts CC- Murdoch University East
As i tipped last week the season for the Murdoch University Melville team has been outstanding and they put paid to High Wycombe with ease. Wembley District completed a wonderful run chase to mow down 244 loosing only 4 wickets in the process against a quality Applecross side. This will be the battle of the MUM bowler’s v WD quality batsmen and therefore this result will hinge on the performance of each others weaknesses in their respective squads.
MURDOCH UNIVERSITY MELVILLE BATSMEN- Tristram Emrich (263 runs @37.57 ave) has been the most consistent for the team and along with John Martyr (214 runs @ 26.8 ave) need to build a big partnership.
MURDOCH UNIVERSITY MELVILLE-BOWLERS- The two standouts again from the weekend and all season are Daren Wilson (season tally of 38 wickets @8.5 ave) also winning the bowling average and aggregate and along president Nick Gohrt (34 wickets @ 11.1 ave) will be the keys for WD to look out for and will bowl long spells.
WEMBLEY DISTRICTS - BATSMEN- A superb unbeaten 121 from Matthew Lombardo (319 runs @39.9 ave) and was well supported by Jack Payne (season of 191 runs @27.3 ave) 80 will see these two batsmen targeted in the final by MUM bowlers.. Paul Stobie and Ashley Lombardo are two others that will be looking to at building a good total to defend or chase.
WEMBLEY DISTRICTS- BOWLERS- Jake Swallow (17 wickets @ 15.24) and Hamish Donavan ( 14 wickets) will be the key strike bowlers for WD to make inroads into the MUM batting line up. Henry Anscombe (5/80 from 28 overs) in the semi final found some badly need form and will look to open the bowl again and repeat his performance from a week earlier.
A match now tipped a little further in the balance of a 50/50 however the consistency of Murdoch University Melville and the fact they have beaten Wembley districts twice before gives them the upper hand.
TIP- MURDOCH UNIVERSITY MELVILLE
GRADE 6- Bassendean CC v Subiaco Marist CC- Jubilee Reserve (synthetic)
Once again the top side in this grade has prevailed and Bassendean cruised to an easy victory over Swanbourne with the loss of 6 wickets whereas Subiaco Marist had to work hard to stave off a determined Murdoch University Melville by 14 runs. This grand final now sets up with Bassendean going in as slight favourites however Subiaco Marist thumped them earlier in the season by over 100 runs and are considered a chance of knocking them off.
BASSENDEAN BATSMEN- Liyanage Perera was instrumental in setting up the victory last week with a seasons top score of 41,. He was well supported by Rogan –Werder-Bigham (296 runs @ 29.6 ave) with a great half century. Season stand-out and association aggregate and average batting champion Nicholas Mony de Kerloy will also look an improved performance in the grand final.
BASSENDEAN BOWLERS- An all-round team performance with the ball last week saw the wickets again shared amongst the team with Daniel Markey (29 wickets @ 10.8) taking 3/38 from 19 overs and Andrew Pullen (21 wickets @13.4) finishing with season best figures of 5/36 from 22 overs.
SUBIACO MARIST BATSMEN-Edric Laing notched up his second half century of the season (season total of 220 runs @ 27.5) and along with a crucial middle order innings from Chris Lewis of 45 no. Matthew Lane will be looking to make amends at the top of the order this week after being run out just when he was getting started.
SUBIACO BOWLERS- Chris Lewis closed the game out last week in style with 4/31 from 14.4 overs and along with Travis Wray (26 wickets @ 9.3 ave) and Udaya Fonseka -14 overs 2/34 (season tally of 20 wickets) will again be considered by captain David Bushell to contribute and deliver.
Both teams look very even on paper however that bad loss earlier in the season by Bassendean against Subiaco Marist should give them the fire they need to get over line and take-out this title.
FOR FULL MATCH PREVIEWS FOR GRADES 7-OD3 click here.
GRADE 7- Fremantle Mosman Park CC v Applecross CC-Gil Fraser Reserve (Turf)
Fremantle Mosman Park cruised into the final with a demolition of Western Suburbs inside of 25 overs all out for 32 to win by 180 runs and stamp its authority going into the final as the team to beat. Applecross had to overcome some adversity in what was a workman like batting display to chase down 127 against a dogged Curtain Victoria Park.
A great team performance by Applecross last week to make the grand final but Fremantle appear in top form and look clear favourites to take out the premiership.
GRADE 8- Subiaco Marist CC v Bassendean CC- Newman College (Synthetic)
The two top teams of the competition will go into the final brimming with confidence after Subiaco Marist overcame a poor batting performance to defend 101 against Swanbourne and Bassendean accounting for High Wycombe by 80 runs. Having played each other only once this year Subiaco Marist holds the upper hand with a hard fought 2 wicket victory.
Coming out of the semi final matches both team look reasonably even however there appears to be a lot more at stake for Bassendean with a club stalwart celebrating an outstanding milestone and therefore my tip goes their way.
OD 1 GRADE- Wembley Districts CC v Murdoch University Melville CC- Wembley Sports Park (Synthetic)
A really even competition here with a bit of a surprise in 3rd and 4th knocking over the top two sides- albeit not much separating them throughout the year- This one could go either way. Wembley Districts compiled a respectable 182 only to knock over Curtain Victoria Park for a miserable 89 while Murdoch University Melville set Western Suburbs a big total of 211 and saw them falter to be all out for just 82.
This competition has been close all year however the statistic that stands out for me is runs and Wembley Districts look the much stronger batting line up.
TIP- WEMBLEY DISTRICT
OD 2 GRADE- Bedford Morley CC v Wembley Districts CC- Grand Prom Reserve (Syn)
With the two top teams of the competition gaining narrow victories all look set for a ripping contest this Saturday to decide the champions. Bedford Morley courtesy of an Alex Smith master class defeated Fremantle Mosman Park by 18 runs with Wembley districts getting over a determined Bentley by just 14 runs.
With what appears to be relatively even teams with little separating them although i see a little more strength in the batting and bowling of Bedford Morley.
TIP - BEDFORD MORLEY
OD 3 GRADE- South Perth CC v Western Suburbs CC- George Burdette Park (Synthetic)
The top two teams progress to the final in this division with South Perth showing their strength is bowling sides out cheaply whereas Western suburbs have accumulated 600 more runs than their opposition for this week- interesting.!!!!!. South Perth can thank their bowlers for being able to protect a small total of 103 against Whitfords whereas Western Suburbs set Balcatta an imposing task of chasing 228 who fell over 100 runs short
With the suspension of one South Perth’s key players this week leaves a gapping hole to fill- For me Western Suburbs in a canter.
TIP- WESTERN SUBURBS