Coutts is on a finals charge
IT HAS been a long time between drinks since Coutts Crossing last won a cricket game.
On Monday night against Brothers, Coutts kept its night competition playoff hopes alive with a thrilling nine-run victory.
Coutts captain Tim Tisle was on ‘cloud nine’ after their dramatic win which gives his side a slim hope of making the elimination final in February.
“It’s our second win of the season and I think it still gives us a chance of featuring in the finals. If we can defeat Harwood in two week’s time we might just sneak in,” a jubilant Tisle said
Coutts was on the back foot early, losing 5-38.
The batsmen were guilty of playing across the line on too many occasions resulting in three plumb LBW decisions.
Troy Henwood arrived at the crease and immediately went about resurrecting Coutts’ innings. Henwood played straight to dispatch Brothers’ bowlers down the ground in what ended up a match-winning performance.
Henwood was eventually dismissed for 40 and featured in a 82-run stand with Ken Willis, who made 31.
“We collapsed early and were in all sorts of trouble until Troy and Ken held the innings together,” Tisle said.
“Luke Cox also played an important role late in the innings to give us a competitive total.”
Cox smashed a rapid-fire 29 to lift Coutts to 7-157 off their allotted 30 overs.
Ryan Lynch finished with 3-16 in a tidy spell of bowling which included the prize wickets of Tilse and Lewis Chevalley.
In reply Brothers’ run-chase looked promising before talented under-16 North Coast representative Brad Chard removed both openers.
“I thought 157 was a good total and after Brad took two early wickets our confidence and self belief grew,” Tisle said.
Languishing at 4-21 and with their finals aspirations on the line, Brothers captain Mick Summers took up the challenge with a fighting knock of 77.
Summers received little assistance from his team-mates who failed to support their skipper through irresponsible batting.
Apart from Chard, Joel Gossen took 2-22 while Luke Cox bowling at the death kept his nerve and was rewarded with 3-28 off five overs.
“Luke kept his cool in the final overs and bowled a tight line,” Tilse said.
“The game could have gone either way but our fielding and bowling in the last 10 overs was excellent.”
Brothers captain Mick Summers said his side needed to show more commitment with their batting and not panic when under pressure.
“We went close in the end but just fell short. Our batsmen didn’t value their wickets enough which cost us the game,” Summers said.
“Henwood and Willis put on an important partnership for them and Luke Cox batted well in the final overs.
“Chard got them off to a great start taking two quick wickets which didn’t help.”