WITH Orange City beating Kinross, Centrals cling on to fourth spot on the Orange District Cricket Association first grade table by two points, despite a three-wicket loss to Cavaliers at Jack Brabham (2).
The result leaves Centrals with a do-or-die two-day match against third-placed, reigning premiers Orange City to ensure they qualify for the semi-finals.
Kinross sits fifth, and play Waratahs next weekend, providing them a good opportunity to leapfrog the red-and-blacks on the ladder.
Centrals quick Dan Sandford said Saturday’s loss was disappointing, considering his team found themselves in the box seat several times.
‘We weren’t switched on,” he said.
“We had a couple of chances to really ram home an advantage, particularly with the ball and we didn’t take them.”
Skipper Jake Pauletto won the toss and batted first, his team compiling 9-136 from their 40 overs.
Centrals batsmen struggled on a two-paced wicket, with Josh Coyte top scoring with 24.
Sandford was given a surprising promotion but capitalised, the regular number 11 scoring 20 not out.
Chris Martin was the best of the Cavaliers bowlers, taking 4-26.
In reply, Cavaliers also found it hard to score, despite Richie Venner (20) starting well before being caught behind off Mark Wiegold.
Matt Death (30) and Leon Lincoln (16) pushed the score along, but wickets fell regularly until Cavaliers found themselves needing just a handful of runs to win, with just three wickets in hand.
Martin skied one, but was put down before taking 17 off Dean Turner’s (2-33) last over to see his team home.
Luke Wilson top scored for Cavaliers with 36 not out.
“I just don’t think we got enough runs,” Sandford said.
“We weren’t really switched on, and there wasn’t a whole lot of application from the guys and we dropped too many catches. We bowled well, Deano and Crutchy [Chris Hutchinson, 1-15] in particular, we just didn’t back it up in the field.”