Mellon heroics bear fruit for in-form Lions

Taj StubberAlbany Advertiser
Royals' Mitch Green looks to pull a ball.
Camera IconRoyals' Mitch Green looks to pull a ball. Credit: Cameron Newbold

Late heroics from tailender Marcus Mellon and another brilliant knock from Jack Steel have helped Royals surge to third straight win, beating Mt Barker in a last-over thriller at Souness Park on Saturday.

The Lions were set the task of chasing a formidable 246 to win and they held their nerve in a dramatic final few overs as Mellon took two off the final ball of the match from Noah Middleton to hand his side a epic one-wicket result.

The Bulls were on top early following an impressive display with the bat as they reduced the Lions to 4-100.

Jack Steel produced a superb knock to counter the Bulls’ attack, as he smashed 81 runs from 96 balls and shared in a vital 99-run partnership with youngster Ryley Valli.

Scott Worsfold was the ninth wicket to fall, caught in the deep trying to clear the boundary in the 49th over.

Mellon was on five when Worsfold departed and from there he took a single off the last Todd Hammond deliver to remain on strike.

The final over was bowled by Middleton and Mellon started with a four and that was followed by a dot ball.

Singles to Mellon and his partner Cameron Newbold edged the Lions closer and then Mellon chipped over the infield for two runs to tie the scores on the fifth ball.

Mt Barker’s Kobi Williams bowls.
Camera IconMt Barker’s Kobi Williams bowls. Credit: Cameron Newbold

Mellon repeated the dose after the field was brought up, another two runs guiding the Lions to a unlikely victory on the last ball of the match.

It was a calm knock at the finish by Mellon who was unbeaten on 15 and part of a Lions’ lower order that all played their part.

Worsfold (17) and Sam Steel (14) were important contributors along with teammates Valli (24) and Mitch Green (45).

It was the second week in a row the Bulls have lost on the final ball, going down to Collingwood Park in a close finish in round five.

Nathan Crosby and Jeremy Wood helped guide the home side to their imposing total after putting together a 79-run partnership.

Wood was dismissed for 53 leaving his side at 3-140, Crosby continued to a half century before being removed for 65.

Mt Barker celebrate the wicket of Cohen Chapman.
Camera IconMt Barker celebrate the wicket of Cohen Chapman. Credit: Cameron Newbold

The Bulls were at 5-171 when Crosby was dismissed but some late hitting from Todd Hammond (17) and Clinton Hammond (27) helped them reach 8-245.

Green led their undermanned attack taking 3-17 off his seven overs while Valli impressed with 2-36 off his nine overs, including three maidens.

Following on from his half century against Denmark last week, Jack Steel crafted his best ever score of 81 that got his side out of trouble. Jack Steel smacked three sixes and seven fours in his innings before he fell to Tim Shephard, who snared two wickets in his only over of the game.

The Lions needed 52 to win from the last 10 overs and now move 17 points clear in third place.

Middleton finished with 2-38 and was the pick of the bowlers along with Wood (1-28 off 10).

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