LINE AND STRENGTH: Weatherstone turns innings with six-for
BROTHERS v COUTTS: Paceman Billy Weatherstone produced an inspired spell to help Brothers into a commanding position in the clash against Coutts.
Brothers are now poised to tighten their stranglehold on second place on the GDSC Premier League ladder having reached 1-88 at stumps after Weatherstone helped bundle Coutts out for just 141 on the opening day of the two-day affair.
Weatherstone tore through the Coutts top-order to turn the innings on its head after Tim Tilse (39) and Ryan Cotten (36) got the batting side off to a flier.
Weatherstone finished with six wickets for 29 off 11.3 overs, having started the rot by claiming both openers.
"We are definitely happy to finish the innings like that, especially after they got away from us early on,” Brothers captain Jake Kroehnert said.
"Bill Weatherstone with his medium pacers in the middle overs really turned it our way.
"He has probably been a bit under-bowled this season so I threw him the ball early on and he really took it with both hands.”
Despite the Ulmarra Showground wicket evening out as the innings progressed, Weatherstone managed to keep hitting a fourth-stump line that continually troubled the Coutts batsmen.
"Line and length all day,” Kroehnert said of the strategy. "He never really strayed from his area, just got a couple to nip back and hit the stumps. It was great to watch.”
"It really was a good toss to lose. The Coutts boys really put in some work early on because it was moving all over the place.
"But as the day went on it began to flatten out, so we did get the pick of the conditions.”
At one stage Coutts looked on target to reach about 170 from their 80 overs but a red-hot second spell from Mitch Kroehnert (2-28) and the support of Andy Kinnane (1-12) ensured Coutts fell about 20 runs shy of a par score Kroehnert said.
With plenty of time left to play Kroehnert sent brother Mitch out at the top of the order with a mission to bat out the afternoon.
His was the only wicket to fall as Brothers set up for a secure chase next week.
"We just really focussed on not taking any risks and leaving wickets in hand,” Kroehnert said.
"The idea will just be to keep our heads and take our time getting to their score.”
COUTTS CROSSING V BROTHERS
At Ulmarra Showground
Toss: Coutts Crossing
Umpires: Bruce Baxter, Jeffrey Thompson
Coutts Crossing 1st Innings
T Tilse b BJ Weatherstone 39
L Cox c Jurd b JS Weatherstone 12
R Cotten c Kerr b BJ Weatherstone 36
N Wood c Firth b Kinnane 6
E Fahey c & b BJ Weatherstone 28
B North c J Kroehnert b BJ Weatherstone 4
AB Elliott b BJ Weatherstone 0
N O'Connell c JS Weatherstone b BJ Weatherstone 3
RS Gaddes c JS Weatherstone b M Kroehnert 5
A McLachlan b M Kroehnert 0
Z Page not out 0
Extras (b 7, lb 0, w 1, nb 0) 8
ALL-OUT for 141
FoW: 1-20(L Cox) 2-81(T Tilse) 3-96(R Cotten) 4-96(N Wood) 5-106(B North) 6-108(AB Elliott) 7-120(N O'Connell) 8-125(RS Gaddes) 9-125(A McLachlan) 10-141(E Fahey)
Bowling: M Kroehnert 13-6-28-2, JS Weatherstone 5-0-30-1, J Kroehnert 5-0-26-0, BJ Weatherstone 11.3-4-29-6, T McLaren 2-0-9-0, AJ Kinnane 4-0-12-1
Brothers 1st Innings
M Kroehnert c Fahey b Elliott 33
W Kerr not out 26
J Kroehnert not out 26
Extras (b 0, lb 2, w 1, nb 0) 3
ONE wicket for 88
FoW: 1-42(M Kroehnert)
Bowling: Z Page 8-2-25-0, AB Elliott 10-0-29-1, N Wood 5-1-12-0, B North 4-1-5-0, A McLachlan 5-2-13-0, E Fahey 1-0-2-0