THERE were some nail-biting finishes to Round 12 of Millicent and Naracoorte District cricket on the weekend.
Of the three top-grade matches played, two went down to the wire.
MILLICENT BLACK HATS 5/222 d NARACOORTE WARRIORS 6/220
The closest fixture from the round was contested at Naracoorte’s Wortley Oval when the home Townies team hosted ladder-leader Millicent Black Hats.
In the end it came down to the final ball of the game, where Millicent young gun Kobe Gibson hit a four to win the match by two runs.
The toss was won by the Townies and they elected to bat, after which they went on to set a solid target of 220 runs after the 40 overs.
A century to opener Loren Bald helped things on their way, with his 118 runs the top score for the match.
Fellow opener Jason McClure made 20 runs before he was caught out in the 10th over, where he was replaced by Nicolas Bald.
Bald made eight runs before he was dismissed, while Remi Brown (three runs) and Mitchell Hateley (six) also fell during Loren Bald’s stint.
The centurion was next to go, caught by Mitchell Nitschke off a Jase Bateman delivery.
His 118 runs formed the bulk of Naracoorte’s score, with Brad Redding’s unbeaten 33 the next best return.
Best with the ball was Bateman and he was the only Black Hat to claim multiple wickets with two.
A 220-run total was not going to be an easy chase and it came down to the final ball of the day, where Gibson hit a four off Lucas Bald to secure the nail-biting win.
The runs came steadily for the Black Hats with openers Sam Hunt and Cambell Hateley making 51 and 44 runs respectively.
Bateman entered at third and backed up his bowling efforts with a 48-run performance, while Mitchell Nitschke’s time at the crease was short lived with just the one run.
Gibson and Alex Wesolowski saw out the innings, with the former putting in a 37-run effort to push Millicent across the line at the last minute.
It was an impressive result from the ladder leaders and ensured they maintain their one-win buffer at the peak of the pecking order.
LUCINDALE ROOS 5/197 d ROBE ROOSTERS 6/196
Over at Robe a visiting Lucindale Roos claimed a tight win over the Roosters for Round 12.
The guests won the toss and elected to bowl first.
Robe lasted the full 40 overs, losing six wickets on its way to a 196-run total.
It was a well-rounded performance, with six of the eight batsmen making double figures.
Lucindale’s Sam Teakle was the best of the bowlers, taking 3/52, while Daniel McCarthy, Daniel Lane and Nathan James had one each.
The Roos started slower with the bat, but soon settled in.
Will Graetz was an early casualty, out for four, before Shane McGurk and captain Nathan James starting piling on the runs.
McGurk finished up with 41, while James had 27, bested only by Tom Fisher’s 47 and Michael McGurk’s unbeaten 49.
They reached their target with two overs to spare, with five wickets still in hand.
Ben Dinning performed well with the ball and claimed 3/22 to top Robe’s bowling sheets, while Robbie Chappel had two.
RENDELSHAM RAMS 2/97 d MOUNT BURR MOZZIES 9/92
In contrast to the other games played, the clash between Mount Burr and Rendelsham was a fizzer.
The Mozzies hosted the match and after batting first were only able to make 92 runs.
They saw out the 40 overs, but were restricted by a strong bowling performance from the Rams.
With an achievable target in sight, Rendelsham padded up and wasted no time chasing down Mount Burr’s score.
They achieved that feat in the 26th over at the expense of only two wickets, with the win keeping them locked in the top three.
Further details from the match were unavailable at the time of print.