Local Cricket, by Jim Timberlake
Geelong Cricket Club plays a one-day game against Carlton at Princes Park tomorrow after last weekend’s rain forced cancellation of the entire day’s play last Saturday.
The Cats did however take to the field last Sunday in the Premier Cricket Vic Super Slam T20 tournament when they travelled to Greenvale to play a double-header.
In the first game, the Cats bowled first and completely outclassed their opponents to dismiss them for a measly 125.
In reply, skipper Eamonn Vines (33) led his side to an easy win.
In the second game against Greenvale, batting first the Cats could only manage a modest 7/139, Tim Ludeman top-scoring with 59.
Early on Greenvale looked like cruising to victory when it reached 2/84 in reply.
The bowlers fought back, though, Brody Crouch leading the way with 3/20 as Geelong bundled out it host for just 122.
The side is in great form and will be ken for a strong showing tomorrow.
In Geelong Cricket Association’s top division, just one game separates third-placed South Barwon from eighth-placed Bell Post Hill in what is proving to be a very exciting season.
Two of the sides stuck right in the middle of the log jam are Geelong City and Grovedale, and they face off tomorrow at Burdoo Reserve in a crucial clash for both sides.
Both sides lost their last game and, although Grovedale could be forgiven for succumbing to a bowler friendly wicket after last week’s rain, the same couldn’t be said for Geelong City, which was unable to defend 248 at home.
The Sharks are yet to settle on their best line-up, and as has been the case for many years, are too reliant on Richie Oliver to do the bulk of their scoring, while veteran Adam Marsland also needs support with the ball.
Grovedale appears the better side on paper, although the players are yet to hit their straps this campaign, with their form fluctuating wildly at times.
The side that can play a more consistent brand of cricket for longer will win this game, and Grovedale appears most likely to do just that.
Selections: St Josephs v NORTH GEELONG, GROVEDALE v Geelong City, Bell Post Hill v NEWTOWN & CHILWELL, EAST BELMONT v Lara, Leopold v SOUTH BARWON.
In division two, every single game could command match-of-the-round status, with four blockbusters scheduled.
In such a tight season, all teams will need to be at their best if they want to keep pressing for finals cricket come March.
Marshall simply must win against Bell Park, while Manifold Heights will need to beat St Peters otherwise it can almost be handed the wooden spoon now.
Selections: Manifold Heights v ST PETERS, Marshall v BELL PARK, Highton v TORQUAY, Thomson v MURGHEBOLUC.
And in division three, Alexander Thomson has moved into third place with a strong win against Geelong West last game and will be primed and ready for a test against the top side, St Albans Breakwater.
The Vikings snared outright points against the Rams in favourable bowling conditions but with better weather predicted will face a much sterner examination of their form.
Selections: Waurn Ponds Deakin v TEESDALE, Alexander Thomson v ST ALBANS BREAKWATER, Geelong West v BANNOCKBURN, CORIO v Newcomb & District, MODEWARRE v Guild Saints.