Collingwood Park hold nerve to deny Bulls in final over thriller

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Collingwood Park’s Nathan De Graaf is averaging more than 50 for his new team.
Camera IconCollingwood Park’s Nathan De Graaf is averaging more than 50 for his new team. Credit: Taj Stubber

Collingwood Park won a final-over thriller as Mt Barker could only manage a leg bye off the last delivery of their round five Albany & Districts Cricket Association A-grade fixture at Turf East on Saturday afternoon.

In the closest result of the 2019-20 season thus far, the Bulls needed seven runs to win off the final over of the match.

It was a dramatic final over as Park Bulls scored four runs and lost a wicket in the first five balls, leaving Clinton Hammond on strike to Ben Grey in the last delivery with the Bulls requiring three runs to win. Clinton Hammond and Todd Hammond scampered through for a leg bye off Grey’s final ball, handing Park a tense one-run win that lifted them seven points clear of the Bulls in fourth spot.

The Bulls needed 28 runs from the final five overs before Luke Douglas was run-out in the 41st over. Jesse Spaanderman then snared the crucial breakthrough by dismissing Patrick Butler, who was playing his first game for the Bulls since joining from grade club Scarborough, on 15 in the 42nd over.

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Heberle’s last over went for 10 runs as the Bulls edged closer to victory but they could only manage five runs from the 44th over bowled by Spaanderman.

Grey produced a terrific final over. Todd Hammond scored two runs before Grey conceded a bye but that was followed by a dot and then Steven Scott was run-out on 11 to make the task even harder.

Dustin Boyce snared two wickets in his first A-grade game for Park, including that of Bulls skipper Jeremy Wood on 30. Wood and opener Alex Fergie combined for 64 runs to have the Bulls run chase well in hand early on.

Fergie was the mainstay of the innings, making a patient 68 off 118 balls, only to be bowled by Heberle in the final 10 overs. Spaanderman played a crucial role with the ball in Park’s second win of the season, his seven overs returning 1-29 while Grey’s eight overs went for just 22 runs.

Nathan De Graaf’s great form since switching to Park continued as he made 73 to push his side to a competitive total. De Graaf is averaging 51 for Park in his three games and he was supported by Grey (22) and Heberle (26) as Park made 191 all out.

Wood was the pick of the bowlers with 2-30 from nine overs.

Meanwhile Royals secured back-to-back wins for the first time this season, beating Denmark by 57 runs.

With a changed batting order, Jack Steel top scored with 59 for the Lions before Marcus Mellon ripped through the Magpies to help deliver a bonus point.

Mellon’s five-wicket haul helped dismiss the Magpies for 156 in pursuit of 214 despite a gutsy knock of 62 from Englishman Ben Attrill.

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