AN unbeaten century from Bathurst’s Jameel Qureshi squashed any chances of Orange finishing its Western Premier League season on a high.
Playing at Orange’s Wade Park yesterday, Bathurst claimed an eight-wicket win in the second last over of their representative fixture.
Neither Orange or Bathurst could make the WPL final but the visitors were happy to finish their season with a win.
“We did really well,” Qureshi said.
“It was good to get it [the winning total] two-down.”
Orange captain Matt Findlay said while his side was in the hunt, it didn’t go their way.
“We just got beaten by a better side,” Findlay said.
Orange batted first and delivered one of its better performances of the season making 9-231 from 50 overs.
Opener James Ryan (3) went cheaply but Findlay (47) and James Conn (23) were able to push Orange to 73 for the second wicket.
Luke Clarke (20) and Nick Wright (32) also posted good starts while Stuart Naden, at number six, delivered 54.
Jake Pauletto (17) and Max Dodds (17 not out) helped Orange late in the innings to a defendable total.
The Bathurst bowlers were in good form with Daniel Casey (2-37), Qureshi (2-40) and Parvan Sani (2-42) each taking multiple wickets.
Bathurst lost opener Imran Qureshi (7) early before Michael Waldren (40) and Qureshi (107no) put on 48 for the second wicket.
Qureshi and Wayne Sellers (53no) worked their way to 2-235 and a Bathurst win.
Qureshi didn’t have a lot to say about his unbeaten ton.
“I was a bit scratchy early on,” he said.
He may have had words to his teammate after Sellers hit Qureshi late in the innings off a Liam Gough delivery.
“I even leant him my bat and he’s trying to take me out,” Qureshi laughed.
The Bathurst batsmen punished any bad deliveries.
“They were always in it. They bowled pretty well,” Qureshi said of Orange.
“That’s our last game for the season. It was good to get the win.”
Findlay said, while disappointed to lose, it was an improved performance from the Orange side.
“We batted really well,” Findlay said.
“Stuart Naden was a standout. Nick Wright batted well. A few of us chipped in. It was really pleasing.
“It wasn’t so much one bloke getting runs and everyone batting around him. There were 30s, 40s, 50s which, granted, one or two of them probably should have turned into a 100 or a 90 or an 80 or a bigger score.
“I was pretty confident we’d win that game - it just didn’t happen.”
The 231 was Orange’s biggest total of the season.
However, they have celebrated just one victory which was in the opening President’s Cup round against Blue Mountains.
Findlay said it wasn’t all bad news.
“We’re heading in the right direction, it’s just a matter of getting to where we want to go,” he said.
“They say you have to lose to know how to win. It’s all experience. We’ll be better for it next season.”