Bulls must bring best, says skipper
Mt Barker captain Jeremy Wood says his club has no option but to produce their best cricket of the season to play finals and defeat ladder leader Railways on Saturday.
Royals, North County and Wood’s Bulls are the three teams locked in a battle for the final two spots in the Albany Cricket Association A-grade top four heading into the final round.
Wood said ending the Tigers’ 11-game winning streak would be a “great challenge” and labelled the encounter a “mini grand final” for his side on turf east.
“It’s straightforward for us,” he said.
“I think we are good enough to beat Railways, we just need to get some guys at the back end of our batting order to stand up.
“It’s a bit disappointing to be in this position but that’s the position we find ourselves in.”
Top-order runs from Wood and fellow WA Country XI batsman Nathan Crosby will hold the key to the Bulls holding their place in the top four.
Wood said he had no qualms with playing on turf east, believing the criticism towards the pitch was unfounded and was just excuses from batsmen with a lack of application.
The Tigers won the only match between the two sides in round 2 by 17 runs with their December clash abandoned due to rain.
The Bulls will be hoping Denmark can upset North County, which would allow Wood’s side to progress even if they were to lose to the Tigers.
With the bye in the last round, Lions captain Jack Hastie said his side would anxiously watch the final round with two matches having a direct bearing on their finals chance.
“Obviously very proud of the boys to turn the season around like they did,” he said.
“I think, especially with such a young group, to be as resilient as we were second half of this year says a lot about their character,” he said.
“We are happy with where we have ended up. Having a bye in the last round is always a bit tricky but I think we’ve done enough to sneak into the four and really push teams in the finals.”
Second-placed Manypeaks will take on Collingwood Park on turf north in the other A-grade fixture. Only the Bulls can remove Peaks from second place on the ladder.
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