Round 14 Match Report - Win some, you lose some

08-Mar-2018 First Grade will be relying on other results if they are to play finals in 2017/18 after a hard-fought loss to competition front runners Parramatta at Waverley Oval.

The Dolphins were always up against it after having made a below par 230 on day one, but with Parramatta resuming at 3-61 there was understandable optimism the target could be defended. Those hopes were raised further when off-spinner Will Somerville snared his third wicket for the innings early to reduce the visitors to 4-83.  What Easts hadn’t anticipated was a counter-attacking approach from Parramatta who looked in a hurry as a flurry of fours and sixes made a dent in the target. At 4-137 the pendulum had swung away from Easts but paceman Sam Doggett broke the partnership and then Somerville struck once more to make it 6-147. Again Parramatta’s insistence to hit boundaries let Easts know they were going to need to take the wickets quickly. In six overs, 42 runs were added before Somerville got his fifth wicket at 189.

Despite having two more sessions to bat, it only took the visitors 8 more overs to get within a hit of the target. Somerville made a breakthrough again to finish with 6-87 but it had come too late as Parramatta took the first innings win with two wickets to spare. “We fought really hard today with the ball and it was a good effort, Will Somerville in particular was outstanding for us.” Greg Clarence said. “Unfortunately in a game this important, we needed more than just a good effort and we’ve lost the opportunity to keep destiny in our own hands.”

“We’re still in it but we will need to beat Bankstown in the last game next week if we’re to be any hope.”

Easts will be boosted for the final regular season game next Saturday with NSW players Peter Nevill, Nic Maddinson and Harry Conway returning from state duty.

Second Grade made it their fourth win over the previous five rounds, with a nail bitting one wicket win at Old Kings. Parramatta won the toss on day two and elected to bat. The Easts seamers made inroads from the start reducing the home side to 8/111 not long after lunch. Some tail end resistance proved to be a nuisance as Parramatta were eventually bowled out in the 66th over for 167. Matt Sarkies (3/20) and Jono Smith (3/40) led the way with the ball.

In reply Easts finished the day at 3/82. On day two wickets fell gradually as the Dolphins failed to lock the game away with a match winning partnership. It was Matt Sarkies (48no) who proved the difference as he helped guide the visitors home.

Third Grade were met with a more than sporting wicket when they arrived at Trumper to take on the competition leaders. Losing the toss, Parramatta had no hesitation in asking Easts to bat first. The Dolphins progressed along to 3/68 before the innings quickly fell apart as Easts were bowled out for 123. In his 100th Grade match for Easts, Ollie Maxwell grafted 35, while Sam Powell remained 25 not out to give the home side something to bowl at.

In reply, the visitors moved to 0/25 before JJ Coutts turned the match taking five of the six wickets which fell in the last hour of play. Parramatta went to stumps at 6/62, with the Dolphins feeling they had a stranglehold on the game if they could continue the momentum. On day two, Easts made quick work of the visitors bowling them out for 75, with JJ Coutts claiming 7/35 from 19 overs. Jack Remond offered support claiming 2/21. Easts batted again and progressed through to 4/147 with Udit Mehta compiling 82, when time was called.

A finals spot isn’t yet assured for Third Grade, with a last round victory possibly pushing them as high as 3rd place.

Fourth Grade ventured to Merrylands where they found the going tough. Winning the toss Easts elected to bowl on a hot afternoon and the home side amassed 9/311 with Finbar Stenmark picking up three wickets and Steve Lewis and Dan Donato, two each. Day two was a day the visitors would have preferred to forget as the first innings quickly fell to 9/70. A last wicket partnership pushed the total to 114, still 198 runs short. As expected Easts were asked to bat again and managed to bat the day out avoiding an outright defeat finishing at 8/132.

Fifth Grade played their last home game at Snape Park in a low scoring thriller. Batting first on day one, Easts mustered 95 on a bowler friendly wicket with George Black scoring half the sides runs as he finished 45 not out. In reply the Easts bowlers quickly bought the game back into the balance reducing Parramatta to 5/45 at stumps. On day two the pendulum swung back and forth and at 8/82 Easts must have felt they were favourites, but unfortunately the ensuing partnership saw the visitors home by eight wickets, eventually being bowled out for 100. Corey de Wit claimed 4/23, with David Dunne (3/26) and Shreyan Deshpande (3/22) offering support.

Sixth Grade also experienced the bowler friendly conditions that Trumper offered on the Sunday against Mosman. Easts were sent in and moved through to 9/95 when the heavens opened and play was abandoned. Tom Adams compiled 36. With 120 overs of play on day two, Mosman quickly finished things off and had no difficulty in knocking off the Easts total eventually being bowled out for 218. Easts batted again looking to avoid an outright defeat and Archie Cornell produced a well compiled 70 off 79 balls.

Sixth Grade currently sit in 4th place and are assured of a finals spot with one round to play with the possibility of finishing anywhere between 3rd and 6th place. 

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