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Albany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side suffers defeat in junior country week grand final

Harry GrigsonAlbany Advertiser
Albany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side at the WACA before their grand final.
Camera IconAlbany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side at the WACA before their grand final. Credit: Facebook

Albany and Districts Cricket Association’s under-16A side fell agonisingly short of securing their second straight junior country week title after going down to Bunbury and Districts Cricket Association by 36 runs at the WACA on Friday.

Last year the Whalers won the decider against BDCA but this time their rivals ensured they did not suffer the same fate.

A superb batting display from BDCA allowed them to post a strong score of 243 at the end of their batting innings.

While the Whalers made a brilliant effort in the chase, the total proved insurmountable for them to reel in and they were dismissed 36 runs shy.

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After winning the toss and batting, BDCA were off to an ideal start with openers Lucas Pedrochi (36) and Prabhnooh Gill (26) shaking hands for their half-century stand.

Albany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side.
Camera IconAlbany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side. Credit: Facebook

But when Whaler’s paceman Ollie Douglas skittled Gill followed by Taj Houlahan the next ball, BDCA lost five quick wickets and slumped to 5-109.

However, BDCA’s third wicketkeeper-bat Matthew Allen (88) still remained at the crease scoring freely and ticking the scoreboard over frequently.

He and Thomas Sletten (65) combined for a mammoth 117-run sixth-wicket partnership as the pair made it look easy against their opposition.

Allen’s inning was brought to an end in the 47th over by Ryan Hick.

His superb and much-needed knock included eight fours and two sixes, while Sletten also bashed eight fours on his way to 65.

BDCA were bowled out for 243 in the final over of their batting innings.

Albany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side.
Camera IconAlbany and Districts Cricket Association under-16A side. Credit: Facebook

Olli Douglas bowled a treat for the Whalers taking 2-49 from his 10 overs, which included the scalps of Gill and Allen.

Skipper Buddy Robinson bowled brilliantly at the death and took 2-20 from his six overs.

The Whalers started their run chase patiently and reached the nine-over mark unscathed with 23 runs.

But things began to unravel when they lost Lochlan Otway (10), Max Osborne (14) and Jake Schwarzbach (0) within 11 balls.

Robinson provided a true skipper’s knock with 50 from 57 deliveries, as he and Hick - who contributed a run-a-ball 21 - combined for a 61-run partnership.

Douglas (23) and Davey Wignall (24) each got starts but as the required run rate continued to climb so did the chances of wickets.

The Whalers were rolled for 207 in the 44th over.

Houlahan took 3-39 from nine overs, while Lucas Maratea claimed 3-27 from six.

After overcoming an early stumble in round one losing to the eventual winners, the Whalers stormed home in the final four matches to book their spot in the decider.

They secured enormous wins over Broome, Geraldton and Wellington in the three group stage games before the grand final, but ultimately could not match their bogey team at this year’s tournament.

Robinson finished the tournament with the fifth most runs scored with 135 at an average of 22.5, while Hick scored 130 at 26.

Osbourne was equal seventh in the wickets tally with eight at an impressive average of 12.5

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