PORT Panthers Pirates moved into second spot after a valuable one-day victory over Camden Haven in the penultimate round on Saturday.
The Pirates won by six wickets at Laurieton Oval to keep up their charge towards the business end of the competition.
Batting at the top of the order, Jack Connolly (46) and Ryan McMahon (42) put on 93 for the first wicket in the team’s reply to the Haven’s 152.
The Pirates passed the total in the 37th over. Earlier, Daniel Minns was the best with the bat for Camden Haven, scoring 40 before he was bowled by Paul Stait.
Stait also knocked over keeper Michael Mawson for 38. Andrew Howe’s 28 was the only other real contribution from the Camden Haven lineup.
Joining Stait on the wicket-takers list was Rod Morton (4-21 from four overs) and Nick Bartlett, whose seven overs returned 2-17. Morton comes in handy when the ball has stopped swinging, or, as Stait put it, “when the quicker bowlers are getting hit a bit”.
“He comes in and bowls his tricky leggies,” Stait said.
The other two Camden Haven wickets were run-outs. Nathan Kerr and Matt Whatson were both caught short of the crease.
Stait described the Laurieton Oval wicket as the best in the district, with something in it for batsmen and bowlers.
“We bowled them out, so obviously the ball’s doing enough,” he said. “They got a few of us out too.”
The batting effort was pleasing, too, with the youngsters in the team standing up to be counted.
It bodes well for the looming finals. First though, the Pirates have top-placed Macquarie Hotel next weekend. Stait said it would be a good warm-up. It’s another important game, too. The table is so tight that a loss would mean a slide down a very slippery slope and possibly out of the top four.
Comboyne went for a slide, after losing to Wauchope RSL at Andrews Park. Wauchope scored 8-121 from their rain-shortened 36-over innings. Comboyne fell 21 short in reply to make 100 neat.
The evergreen Jason Blythe took four wickets for Wauchope.
Macquarie Hotel got the better of Port City Leagues Magpies in a rain-shortened match at Oxley Oval. Macquarie made 5-136 in its 27 overs, and rolled the Magpies for 96 in 21.4.