Orange City will begin its two-week preparations for the 2017-18 Orange District Cricket Association grand final after unbeaten tons from Taylor Beatty and Tim Low inspired the greens to an emphatic nine-wicket win in last weekend’s final regular season round.
Centrals needed to defeat the minor premiers and Kinross to knock off CYMS to have a chance at sneaking into third and although the latter happened, Beatty and Low’s remarkable, unbeaten, 221-run second-wicket partnership snuffed out any chance of a red and black victory.
Chasing 234 at Country Club Oval, Beatty and Low came together at 1-13 and belted 106 not out and 105 not out respectively and, giving their teammates a bit more excitement, genuinely raced each other to the triple-figure mark.
After both sat on 99 at the same time, Beatty won that race to reach his second ton of the season before Low belted a boundary to reach his own century just a couple of balls later.
“It’s not very often you make triple figures without giving a chance but Taylor did, his innings was flawless. He controlled the game from the moment he took to the crease. Lowy survived a couple of chances but they weren’t taken and he capitalised on it, they both batted brilliantly,” City skipper Craig Rogan said, also saying his troops have put their collapse to 50 two weeks ago firmly behind them.
“We’ve shown an ability [to make big scores] before and this shows that collapse was an anomaly, and probably a good one to get out of the way then rather than in two weeks’ time.”
City will now play the winner of next weekend’s preliminary final showdown between Cavaliers and CYMS in the decider, and Rogan’s confident the week off won’t stifle his side’s momentum or form.
“It probably comes at a reasonable time for us actually, we haven’t had a bye for [seven] weeks so it’ll be good for us to be able to freshen up a little bit,” he said.
“We’ll definitely be doing a lot of work over the next two weeks, especially with our second grade side also winning straight through with the minor premiership. We’ll have a couple of good hit outs as a club and work on what we need to.”
Centrals looked a real chance after Matt Burgess’ commanding lower-order counter-attack pushed the side well above 200.
He belted 63 not out from number seven after entering the fray at 5-101 – Brett Causer (3-40), Ed Morrish (2-74) and Beatty (2-23) hit the mark early for City – with Wes Roweth (38) also adding valuable runs during his stint at the crease.
We’ll definitely be doing a lot of work over the next two weeks.City skipper Craig Rogan, on his side's grand final preparation
Rogan (12) fell early in the chase to leave City 1-13 with only 10 batsmen after Nathan Rosser busted his finger in the field, but Beatty and Low worked hard to push the Warriors to 1-45 at Sunday’s first drinks break, then 1-140 at lunch.
By that stage the game was all but over, the pair adding another 94 to secure the massive win with stumps called at about 3pm right after the Warriors reached their target.
Dan Sandford (1-29) toiled hard, as did the rest of the Centrals bowlers. Daryl Kennewell (0-61) and Jye Barrow (0-33) were the next best of the bowlers.
“We batted well without scoring the runs we needed, it would’ve been ideal to get to the 290 or 300 mark,” Kennewell said.
“We bowled well too, but there was the odd loose ball they capitalised on and they did bat well. Beatty’s innings was beautiful and Lowy did a great job to capitalise after getting away with a couple, but we needed to take those chances.
“Nothing really went out far. Half-chances going just out of hand, inside edges going past leg stump. But, I’ve said since Christmas we’ve been our own worst enemies and that happened again here.
“We put ourselves in the position we were in in this game and it is disappointing to miss out, but we’ve only got ourselves to blame.”
AT A GLANCE
ORANGE CITY 1-234 (Taylor Beatty 106*, Tim Low 105*; Dan Sandford 1-29) def CENTRALS 233 (Matt Burgess 63*, Wes Roweth 38, Dean Turner 30; Brett Causer 3-40, Jackson Coote 2-26, Taylor Beatty 2-23, Ed Morrish 2-74) by nine wickets