Tucabia strike bowler Chard takes hattrick
TUCABIA v WESTLAWN: While those who have faced Brad Chard would know taking a hattrick is well within his capabilities, it came as a complete surprise on Saturday.
There was little grandeur or excitement in the celebration of the GI Hotel Tucabia-Copmanhurst express pace bowler’s third consecutive wicket at McKittrick Park as the team converged for the customary high fives in the post-wicket huddle.
“It was a funny hattrick. We sort of didn’t realise at the time,” captain Bob McKenzie said.
“The first wicket was off the last ball of the previous over. Then he took wickets off the first two balls of the next over and someone come in and mentioned that it was a hattrick.”
It was not until a teammate had pointed it out that Chard even realised he had achieved the feat.
“Piggy (Matt Pigg) jokingly said something about it and then young Tyson (Blackadder) said that it actually was a hattrick,” Chard said.
The GDSC Premier League’s leading wicket taker went wicketless in his first spell as Jacaranda Hotel Westlawn built a solid platform led by opener Luke McLachlan.
But his second spell was devastating. Chard’s hattrick, consisting of snaring Ian O’Toole caught behind followed by the death rattle of Shaun Simpson and Eddie Gordon, kicked off five wickets in seven deliveries to demolish the Westlawn tail, all out for just 127.
Surprisingly, Chard’s figures of 5 for 28 off 8 overs was his first five-wicket haul of the season, having snared four dismissals on six previous occasions.
Even more surprising was the fact it was the former Australia Under-19 representative’s first hattrick of his career.
“It’s about time,” the 22-year-old said. “I’ve been on a few, but never got one.”
A modest day out by his major rivals means Chard has surged ahead in the competition’s leading wicket taker race.
His tally of victims has raced to 31 while South Services’ Adam Spies (24) and Harwood’s Nathan Essex (21) both went wicketles at Ulmarra Showground and Coutts Crossing’s Zac Page (22) took just the one wicket. Brothers off spinner Andrew Kinnane (24) moved up to second in the pecking order with a three-wicket haul.
Meanwhile, Tucabia received a further boost with Brayden Pardoe bowling his first full spell since returning from hip surgery. The left arm quick gave his captain plenty to smile about in his spell of 3 for 24 off 8 over which included two maidens.
“We’ll see how he pulls up, but hopefully it’s only onwards and upwards from here on in with Brayden,” McKenzie said.
Tucabia’s successful run chase was set up by another impressive innings from opener Matt Dougherty (62no).