ST MARY’S has taken the ladder lead after the preliminary rounds of the one day shield ended on Saturday with a great victory over their grand final opponents, Grampians, at Melville Oval.
The Hamilton and District Cricket Association reigning premiers were disciplined in their run chase as the Pumas bowlers failed to settle on a good line and length after the batsmen gave them a 200 run total to defend.
Winning the toss and electing to bat first, Grampians skipper Stephen Field opened the innings with Sam Kerber and the veteran looked to get after any loose bowling as he smashed three boundaries in reaching 14 before he walked for a catch at the wicket from the bowling of Brandon Ross.
Saints skipper Mick Ross led the way with the ball in taking 2-39 while Ali and Brandon Ross each claimed a scalp as the bat dominated the ball.
Knowing that a good start was vital chasing a big target, Saint Wayne Dennett took 10 runs from the first three balls of the innings as he attacked McGregor from the start, while Ali Ross smacked Bruce Humphries to the fence twice from his opening deliveries in the second over.
After two overs the score stood at 0-20 and that poor line and length came back to haunt the Pumas at the end of the day.
Dennett and Ross began quickly and they settled down to play their natural games as the score mounted with each passing over.
In the end, Mick Ross and Nic Cullinane were left to tackle the equation of a run a ball needed to claim the points, which they did so with ease finishing on 5-219 to claim top spot on both the one day shield and the premiership ladders.
Field was the best of the Pumas attack claiming 1-19 from his eight overs while Joyce took 3-35 to give his skipper great assistance.
Full report in today’s Spectator.