Geelong, Uni set to battle for top eight

READY TO GO: Corio Cricket Club's clubrooms, all decked out for last weekend's celebrations.

Local Cricket, by Jim Timberlake

Geelong Cricket Club was denied the opportunity to push for first innings points last Saturday when play was abandoned before a ball could even be bowled.

With Dandenong set to resume at 6/54 in pursuit of 155, the Cats would have been confident of taking the remaining four wickets and posting their third win of the season.

Instead they find themselves just inside the top eight with two wins and two losses.

This weekend they travel to Melbourne University for a Saturday/Sunday two-day game that both sides really need to win to cement their position inside the top eight.

Geelong Cricket Association was also severely affected by the wet weather, with all junior and senior cricket called off early last Saturday morning.

As last Saturday was scheduled to be the first day of a two-day game, all games will now be played as one-day fixtures this Saturday.

For some clubs this may be a blessing in disguise because a host of players previously unavailable due to Melbourne Cup weekend will now be available again.

Leopold should welcome Corey Ogle back after he was not selected for the two-day game due to other commitments, while East Belmont will hope Dylan McMahon has overcome his minor hand injury and is ready to go against Bell Post Hill.

The extended break may also give Brad Hauenstein some extra recovery time as he looks to return from a hamstring injury suffered in round one.

In division two, what was scheduled to be all clubs first two-day game of the season will now revert to one-day games.

However, the games will not count toward to the separate one-day ladder that the GCA is trialling this season.

With division two being an eight-team division, and with seven one-day rounds and seven two-day rounds scheduled, all one-day games will be played prior to the Christmas break so the best of the best can battle it out for the new title of one-day champions.

The top two teams in each of the three grades will play off for the minor trophy on 21 December, a date that has traditionally struggled to receive wide spread support due to its proximity to the festive season.

So far the initiative has been widely embraced and should make for an intriguing run into mid-December when the finalists will be known.

In division three, Corio Cricket Club was determined not to let last week’s washout ruin its party as the club pushed ahead with its McGrath Foundation breast cancer fundraiser.

The occasion was a huge success, with over 100 people in attendance and nearly $2000 raised in what was a fantastic day for the club.

With the remaining Pink Stumps Day on field festivities still planned for tomorrow, and a mouth-watering game against St Albans Breakwater scheduled, the club hopes to draw a big crowd and extend that figure closer to the $3000 mark.

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