By Anthony Sequeira
Bowlers took full advantage of cooler conditions in the Yarra Valley Cricket Association this week, as they went about defending last week’s scores.
In Strachan Shield, Wandin continued its impressive run, defeating Gruyere in convincing fashion.
The Scorpions began smartly, turning runs over they took themselves to 50 before losing Rowan Prouse.
From there, wickets began to tumble and Wandins’ 266 looked a very long way away.
As the day wore on it became more about how long Gruyere could hold on rather than if they could make the runs.
In the end, it was Jamie Elliot who wrapped up the innings in his second, claiming the final two Gruyere wickets in three balls.
In the other Strachan Shield game, Healesville’s batting effort was remarkably similar to that of Gruyere.
The big difference being that Healesville was chasing just 178 and should have been well and truly in the game.
A solid start from Healesville’s top three saw them reach 2/75 with Nick Bark picking up both openers.
Even at 4/107 Healesville looked capable of a much-needed win.
In the end, Terry Ottery and Caleb Hrabe were too good as they shared seven wickets to dismiss Healesville for just 122.
In Finger Trophy Blue, Healesville continued a tough day at the office as it was bowled all out for 84 against Yarra Junction.
Brad Nightingale and Rhys Matthews claimed three and four wickets as Ben Mackey was the only batsman to make a solid contribution for the Bloods.
Wandin was always going to find the going tough chasing 400 plus against Coldstream.
Solid knocks from Danny Alderman, David Marshall and Brad McKenzie were not enough as the Coldstream attack shared the wickets and claimed a 240 run thumping.
In Raft Gold, Launching Place took on Woori Yallock in a hard-fought game.
Batting first, Launch got off to a poor start as the top three combined for just seven runs.
The experience of Ben Owen and Stuart Parker guided Launching Place out of trouble before regular wickets allowed Woori to peg back and hold Launch to 158.
In reply, the Tigers were watchful early as they navigated nearly 10 overs without loss.
Woori Yallock found scoring tough as Launching Place made the Tigers scrape out every single run.
Just as they were slipping with the run rate, Jason Young entered and blasted 47 from 28 balls to end up finishing the chase with more than five overs to go.
In One Day Grade, Poweltown continued a good year as it defeated Wandin, Hoddles Creek defeated Launch Gold, Yarra Junction proved too strong for Coldstream and Yarra Glen claimed victory over Healesville.