ORANGE made it back-to-back wins in the Mitchell Cricket Council colts competition, defeating Mudgee by 76 runs at Wade Park yesterday.
After winning the toss and batting, Orange lost John Warrington (9) and James Ryan (6) early in the innings to sit precariously at 2-35.
Kinross young gun Charlie Litchfield (67) and Matt Corben (22) put on 52 for the third wicket, taking the score to 87 before Corben was bowled by Mudgee skipper Troy Kenny.
Orange’s middle order of Max Dodds (13), Jake Pauletto (11) and Sam Nicholls (29) kept the scoreboard ticking over before skipper Hamish Finlayson (32 not out) and Jono Warren (13 not out) put together an unbeaten 35-run partnership to guide the hosts to 7-223.
Kenny was Mudgee’s best bowler, taking 4-29 from his 10 overs.
Mudgee’s chase stuttered immediately, when Kenny was run out by Braden Riles in the fourth over.
With wickets falling at either end, Orange took control of the game despite some powerful counter attacking from Hayden Cox (61), and Mudgee eventually fell well short, bowled out for 147 in the 29th over.
Left arm tearaway Jono Warren was the pick of the Orange bowlers, taking 3-37 from an unchanged 10-over spell. Andrew Johnson (2-43) and James Ryan (2-18) also picked up multiple Mudgee scalps.
Finlayson said despite the result rarely being in doubt, there were times when Orange ‘switched off’.
“It was a really good win, I can’t stress that enough,” he said.
“But there was a couple of periods where we almost let them get on top of us. It was good counter-attacking on their behalf. Their lower order stood up a bit, and they didn’t die wondering.”
Finlayson commended all his troops, singling out Litchfield, before conceding the starts in the middle order needed to be turned into bigger scores.
“Charlie batted really well, he was looking good for a ton,” he explained.
“But we need to try and convert those starts, and make sure we don’t give other teams the chance to dominate key periods in the game.”
Orange’s next colts game is against the Blue Mountains in January, at Wade Park.