ORANGE has suffered its worse loss of the 2013-14 representative season, sensationally slumping to be all out for 99 against the Blue Mountains in Bathurst yesterday.
Set 162 by the Cattle Dogs in a Western Zone Premier League match that doubled as a President’s Cup fixture, Orange collapsed big time, losing 9-27 after being 1-72 in what was a promising platform for the side’s pursuit.
Watching on as his side’s hope of claiming the prized Mitchell Cricket Council President’s Cup slipped away, Orange skipper Matt Findlay said little more than disbelief overcame him as Blue Mountains spinners John Ford (5-11) and Jarrad Hastings (4-26) turned the Cattle Dogs to victory.
“I don’t know what to say,” Findlay said.
“There was a lot of pretty poor shot selection. The main thing is everyone knows how horrendous we’ve played, we just need to move on from it.
“Forgetting about the whole thing is probably best for everyone.”
Batting first, the Blue Mountains found the going tough at Bathurst’s George Park, losing regular wickets to be 7-85.
Forced to return with a runner after retiring hurt earlier in his side’s innings, an injured Sam Trangle resurrected the Cattle Dogs’ innings with an unbeaten 35 to help lift the hosts to the defendable total of 162.
Jackson Coote was the pick of the Orange bowlers, claiming 3-14 off 10 overs.
Beginning the chase well, Charlie Litchfield (34) and Matt Baker (28) combined to steer Orange to 1-73 before disaster struck.
Mitchell off spinner Ford and young leg spinner Hastings combined to collectively take 9-37 and rip the guts out of Orange’s bid to win its second Western Zone Premier League game of the season and firm as President’s Cup favourites.
The President’s Cup race is now as tight as ever, with Mudgee, Bathurst, Orange and the Blue Mountains all boasting one win and one loss from their two clashes.
Blue Mountains coach David Redden was thrilled with the result, his side’s first win of the season.
“We thought the pitch would turn and it did,” Redden said.
“They were all over us there at 7-85 and Sam Trangle was able to come back out and bat with a bad back and got us back in the game.”
It’s the Cattle Dogs first year competing in the Western Zone Premier League and Redden said the side’s main goal was just player development.
“Develop our players on turf, play against the best players and take the losses with the wins,” he said of his side’s campaign.
A master class from Bathurst captain Jameel Qureshi was the difference in their Western Premier League match against Mudgee at Victoria Park in Mudgee yesterday.
The skipper took 5-34 from seven overs in Mudgee’s innings of 9-202, then followed it up with the bat to score 91 not out as Bathurst reached the target three wickets down.