Chris Tremain and his Victorians claimed their first 50-over title in seven years on Wednesday afternoon, the Bushrangers defying Gurindher Sandhu’s seven-wicket haul to seal a 110-run victory over Tasmania at St Kilda’s Junction Oval.
The Tigers’ quick claimed stunning figures of 7-56 – including a hat-trick and four wickets in his final over, the last of the Vics’ innings – as the Bushrangers finished with 274, which actually looked slightly under par initially.
It proved more than enough though as the Vics steamrolled the Tigers for just 164, with Tremain (2-33) one of four multiple wicket-takers.
Incredibly the Vics came from fourth to win the title, and it’s a victory skipper Pete Handscomb – who was crowned player-of-the-final after a knock of 49 and four dismissals behind the stumps – desperately wanted to help catapult his side into the Sheffield Shield season.
Handscomb actually said he wanted to hand his MVP medal to stalwart Cameron White, who played a leading hand in the victory as well.
It was White’s fifth appearance in a one-day final but his first win, the veteran of 19 seasons with Victoria smashed a crucial 88 and moved past 300 runs for the tournament.
“He’s been the most important player in this team for five years, and before then he dominated as well,” Handscomb said of White.
“I thought maybe Cam, with 88 and setting up the game for us might have got [player-of-the-final].
“I’d like to see that he gets rewarded for all the hard work he has been doing. It’s consistent cricket, which is what people ask for. And having him in my team has been unbelievable. “
White’s half-ton was the best of the Vics’ innings, he combined with Marcus Harris (45) in an 88-run opening stand and then added another 83 with Travis Dean (35) for the second wicket.
The Vics slumped to 5-195 quickly though, before Handscomb and Matt Short (37) steadied the ship through the middle order, pushing the score to 252 before the latter put on another 20 with Tremain (5).
The Orange District Cricket Association’s 2008-09 player of the year was the first of Sandhu’s four victims in his final over though, he fell before Short, Fawad Ahmed (0) and Andrew Fekete (0) became part of Tasmania’s first one-day hat-trick.
The Tigers’ chase never really got started, with wickets falling consistently.
They looked in a reasonable position at 3-74 after Ben McDermott (34) and Alex Doolan (46) both got starts, but once they were dismissed things snowballed for Tasmania.
Only George Bailey (11), Tom Rogers (13) and tailender Jackson Bird (26) hit double figures after that, as the Vics rolled through.
Tremain snared the crucial wicket of Doolan, trapping him in front, and picked up Rogers leg before wicket as well later in the innings.
The Vics’ Sheffield Shield campaign starts next Tuesday at the WACA, against Western Australia.
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