It’s no secret CYMS all-rounder Hugh Le Lievre loves the big moments, and you need only look as far back as his grand final centuries in 2014-15 and 2015-16 for proof of that.
While it wasn’t quite on that grand a stage this time around Le Lievre produced another player-of-the-game performance in Orange District Cricket Association’s 12th round, inspiring his green and golds to a somewhat nervy, three-wicket win over Kinross.
With Kinross searching for just their second victory it was undeniably a danger game for the third-placed CYMS, but Le Lievre made sure his side got the job done with two inspired bowling efforts and a composed, methodical stint with willow in hand too.
Le Lievre claimed 3-17 on day one as Kinross fell for 138 and was four not out as CYMS resumed Saturday’s second day, following a rain delay, at 4-92.
He and Mick Hannelly added six more runs before the latter fell and then Andrew Henry (0) and Ed Wright (0) were removed without adding to that tally, CYMS slipping to 7-98.
Le Lievre steadied the ship with Sonny Day-Tennant (25) though, finishing with a crucial, unbeaten 20 as CYMS secured first innings points with three wickets in hand.
Skipper Chris Novak declared at 8-142 in search of an outright win and Le Lievre did everything possible to ensure his side could at least have a crack at that, taking 5-6 from 7.2 overs – five of which were maidens – to help skittle Kinross for 88.
He finished with match figures of 8-23 from 17.2 overs.
As a result CYMS needed 85 to claim maximum points but there simply wasn’t enough overs left in the day, the green and golds finished 5-46 from six in reply.
“We lost an hour-and-a-half at the start of the day, rain delay. If we’d started on time I think we may have got there but even so the boys were pleased to get the job done,” Novak said, before lauding Le Lievre.
“He’s just such a good asset to have in the side, his experience and his attitude with bat and ball and he’s one of the smartest cricketers I know.
“The spell he bowled in the second innings was absolutely superb.”
While Cavaliers’ massive outright win over Centrals ensures the maroons skip 12 points clear on top of the table, the victory helps CYMS make up some ground on second-placed Orange City.
The Warriors had the bye and earned no points as a result, with CYMS’ victory pushing them within a win of the reigning premiers.
The green and golds are now 18 points clear of fourth-placed Centrals and barring a disaster have all but ensure they’ll finish in the top three, which was Novak’s goal at the start of the season.
“We’ll just keep trying to make sure we get that semi-final spot, anything can happen from there.”
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