ORANGE has denied Bathurst a hat-trick of Mitchell Cricket Council junior grand final wins, with the yellow and black caps coming up trumps in the under 14 decider courtesy of a 38-run win at Morse Park in Bathurst.
Orange fought back from 3-3 to post 166 before tearing through the home side’s lower order to snare Bathurst’s last five wickets for just eight runs and secure the premiership win.
Bathurst claimed the under 16 and under 12 MCC junior titles in Bathurst on Sunday and with that in mind, Orange coach Dave Cumming said his side wasn’t going to “lie down for them” to complete a clean sweep.
“We couldn’t let them get all three,” Cumming said.
“It really was a fantastic win. At 3-3 we thought we’d be home by lunchtime, but the improvement in this side has been fantastic. They dug in and knew if they batted the 50 overs they’d get a good score.
“It’s very satisfying.”
Winning the toss and batting first, Orange battled to be 2-1 after the first over of the game.
Orange was then 3-3 before Rory Daburger (42) and Angus Cumming put together the first substantial partnership of the innings.
Cumming soon fell for 20 but when Fletcher Rose entered the crease Orange’s stocks grew.
Rose hit 54 to contribute heavily to a 91-run fifth-wicket partnership with Daburger and lift Orange to 5-135 before finishing their 50 overs at 8-166.
Bathurst’s pursuit of the total began well, completing a strong first session before cementing the side’s stance as premiership favourites in the second session courtesy a smooth progression to a 3-107 scoreline.
But Cumming soon struck.
Completing an economical spell of 10 overs with figures of 2-9, the opening bowler took wickets in consecutive balls to remove Bathurst dangermen Mitchell Russo and Ben Parsons. Charlie Greer then cleaned up the Bathurst tail to finish with 3-42 and bowl out Bathurst for 128.
Coach Cumming was rapt with the result, one that caps a dominant period for the Orange District Junior Cricket Association in the under 14 age group.
“Half of this side won the under 14s last year ... those senior players really stood up,” he said.
Bathurst coach Mick Burrow was still proud of his team’s effort to make the final, praising Orange as a quality side that continues to give him grief in the age group.
“We started off all guns blazing. At first drinks we had them at around 20 and things were looking beautiful,” he said.
“There were some small partnerships going there. When you don’t have long partnerships though you don’t score. We had 70-odd runs to get in the last 16 overs, so a bit over four runs an over which I knew we could do.