Teenager?s ton has a tinge of controversy
Premier league cricket by Tony White
SOUTH Services teenage batsman scored a match winning 151 to steer his team to a first innings win over Brothers Crown Hotel at Ellem Oval on Saturday, but the 17-year-old's magnificent knock was tinged with controversy.
When Kroehnert was on four Brothers players went up appealing for a catch behind after Kroehnert snicked a delivery to the wicket keeper.
However the umpire rejected the confident appeal.
"It was a very confident appeal," South captain Brett Woods admitted. "Fortunately the umpire ruled not out."
Brothers captain Corey Bertalli said his club were considering writing a letter of complaint to the Clarence River Cricket Association over the incident.
"The umpire referred the matter to the square leg umpire whether the ball had carried. Matt was declared not out then out but arked up and was eventually given not out," Bertalli said.
"It was a back-breaking decision for us, disappointing."
Woods revealed the young tyro was far from happy in the early stages of his vital innings.
"I was with Matt for a while and he kept saying he was playing like crap. He couldn't middle the ball and was frustrated," Woods said. "I just told him to try and stick around and try to middle them.
"In the end, he hit them nicely. He was strong all around the ground especially through cover and mid off."
South, chasing 213, initially struggled against some good bowling from John Holmes and Corey Bertalli.
"They were both moving the ball around and getting plenty off the deck," Woods said. "Our game plan revolved around Matt.
"I just told the boys to be patient and get their heads around Matt and support him."
Kroehnert's innings dwarfed his team mates.
Woods was second top scorer with 27 and tail ender Jason Thompson contributed a vital 21 to aid the Kroehnert onslaught.
At 4-85, South looked to be in trouble but throughout the remainder of the innings, South batsman were able to play a vital support role to Kroehnert, who ensured the score kept ticking over with deft and aggressive shot placement.
"Matt made the most of his opportunities," Woods said. "It was an important innings."
South went on to score 267 and picked up first innings points.
Best for Brothers bowlers was new comer Adam Rosbey who snared 3-41 from nine overs.
Pat Vidler (2-55) and Trevor White (2-27) picked up valuable wickets.
With the premiership table cramped in the battle for a top three position to make the finals, South were also able to pick up crucial bonus points in the second innings.
Brothers ended the day at 5-79, White remaining 43no.
Thompson (2-9) from just three overs and Steve Laybutt (2-21) from three overs were the chief destroyers.
"It was a very handy win for us, especially picking up the bonus points," Woods said. "Every bonus point at this stage of the season is like gold."