Harwood batsmen in charge after run blitz
HARWOOD Hilton Cricket Club sent their rivals an ominous warning on the opening day of the Clarence River Cricket Association Premier League season on Saturday.
The Harwood batsmen dominated the opening day of their two-day clash against GI Hotel Tucabia-Copmanhurst at Harwood Oval.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, the home side posted an imposing 8-328 off their allotted 75 overs.
Tucabia's Chris Adamson said it was far from an ideal start to the season.
"It wasn't exactly the best way to open the season," Adamson said.
"We didn't want to spend the whole day chasing the leather but that's cricket.
"In all seriousness, they played really well and we just couldn't get them out."
All of Harwood's top-order batsmen fired with Mark Ensbey leading the way as he blasted the bowlers to all parts of the ground in his top score of 76.
Ensbey struck nine fours and three sixes in his innings and was sending another delivery over the fence before it was interrupted by Adamson.
"It's pretty lucky that I'm a tall bloke or it would've gone straight over the boundary," Adamson said.
Adamson was hopeful his side could turn their fortunes around when play resumes on Saturday but acknowledged the Tucabia batsmen would need to replicate the efforts of Ensbey and the rest of the Harwood line-up.
"They value their wickets and play really patient cricket," Adamson said.
"We might be able to stay out the draw but it definitely won't be an easy task."
At Ulmarra Showground, Clocktower Hotel Brothers were dismissed cheaply by Souths Services, bundled out for a paltry 104 in the 34th over.
In reply, Souths were 5-97 at the close of play.
Captain Michael Summers top scored for Brothers with 34, but the bowlers controlled the game with Fred Holloway picking up 4-37.
Brothers vice president Tom Howard said he was confident his side could regain control next week.
"It won't be easy but if our bowlers fire we could get them," Howard said.
"If it wasn't for the rear-guard action we would've been in a bit more trouble.
"Souths are definitely in command of the game and it's up to the players to wrest it back."
In the other game, MI Organics Westlawn relied on their middle order to post a score of 148 against a fiery GDSC Easts attack at Ellem Oval.
Jackson Wright top-scored for Westlawn, fighting his way to 35 before being bowled by Easts' seamer David Ford.
Ford was the star of the day, taking 6-30 off 15 overs including seven maidens.
Easts captain Tim Whalan praised Ford, attributing his performance to the simplicity of his bowling.
"Fordy just bowled stump to stump all day," Whalan said.
"He didn't do anything flash or different, he just stuck to the same line and got the result."
Light became an issue as the day wore on with Easts 3-52 at stumps.
"It was a bit of a struggle towards the end of the day but we did alright," Whalan said.
"We sent a night watchman out to bat the last few overs but he got out.
"We're in pretty good shape and I think we're more than capable of reaching the target."