Victoria and Queensland sit equal first after the completion of Round Three’s two-day match last week in the Under-17 National Championships in Hobart.
Victoria defeated defending U17 champions NSW, while Queensland comfortably beat WA on Thursday 13th and Friday 14th of December.
Meanwhile, Tasmania and South Australia are the only teams yet to record a win in the tournament so far, after losing to the ACT and the Northern Territory respectively.
Round Three – Victoria (159 all out and 8/162) defeated NSW (123 all out)
In what would end up being a battle of the bowlers, this was the match to decide the front-runner for tournament favourite between old arch-rivals Victoria and New South Wales.
Victoria won the toss and batted, though NSW would have been happy with their bowling after dismissing Victoria for 159 all out. Daniel Fallins was clearly the best of the NSW bowlers, ending up with very impressive figures of 5 for 69. Riley Ayre provided great assistance, chipping in with 3 for 11. A few of the Victorian boys got starts, but no one was able to anchor the innings with Guy Walker (48) and Jack Blain (27) the two stand outs.
NSW would have been wanting to make a dent in the Victorian total without losing too many wickets before stumps on day one, but unfortunately for NSW fans the Vic’s were able to rip through the top order to have NSW reeling at 5 for 58 after day one.
The ball continued to dominate on the second day as Victoria cleaned up the NSW tail to dismiss them for 123 all out and claim first innings points. Only two of the NSW boys were able to get past 20, with Jonathan Rose (22) top scoring. All the Victorian bowlers were impressive and shared the wickets with Guy Walker (3 for 22) and Matthew Bullen (3 for 32).
With the first innings points won, the Vic’s were able to relax and enjoy their second innings, ending on 8/162 when the game was concluded. Jack Blain (45 not out) continued on his form from the first innings, while Riley Ayre (5 for 18) topped off his great game claiming 8 wickets across the two innings.
Round Three – Queensland (9/307 dec) defeated Western Australia (287 all out)
Queensland won the toss and made the bold decision to send Western Australia in to bat, especially after WA posted a decent total of 287 all out that twould take some chasing by QLD.
Clint Hinchliffe (59) and Bevan Bennell (51) led the Victorian batting attack, while the best of the bowlers for QLD was Nick Selman 3 for 21 & Nathan Lyons 3 for 48.
After getting through to stumps safely on day (0 for 26 overnight), QLD flexed their muscle and ultimately showed why they are favourites to win the tournament. Sam Heazlett (95) was the clear standout, with strong contributions from Carlin Anderson (53), Matt Renshaw (49) and Jack Wood (46 not out). In the end, QLD were able to pass the WA total seven down, to end up 9/307 declared.
The WA boys spread the wickets with Bevan Bennell (2 for 36), Rhys Hampson (2 for 57) and Liam Guthrie (2 for 62) all taking two each.
Round Three – ACT (7/297 dec and 2/47) defeated Tasmania (184 all out)
Tasmania also won the toss and sent ACT in to bat, but their decision to field first didn’t pan out like it did for Queensland.
Though the ACT lost two early wickets to be 2/20, they were able to regroup and put together some handy partnerships. They managed to bat into the second day of the match and finally declared on 7/297 off 107 overs, after some impressive batting by Nick Skelly (108), Lakshmn Shivakkumar (66) and Mark Solway (43 not out).
It was a hard slog for the Tasmanian bowlers, with eight different bowlers used throughout the 107 overs. Only two of these eight were able to take multiple wickets (Ben Fraser with 2 for 38 and Jordan Banks-Smith 2 for 48).
The Tasmanian team was left in a hard position and had to choose whether they would attempt the run chase or merely try to play out the day to share the points. It is fair to say this dilemma weighed on the players’ minds as they slumped to be all out for 184 from 60.2 overs. A few of the Tassie players made cameos with Lachlan Fraser (58), Caleb Jewell (34) and Corey Murfet (30) all getting starts but none of them able to go on with it.
Jackson Nichols (3 for 27) did the early damage for ACT and was supported by Tylar Edwards (2 for 22).
In the end, ACT had time to begin their second innings and were 2 for 47 (9 overs) when play concluded.
Northern Territory (170 all out) defeated South Australia (135 all out and 4/209)
The loss of early wickets was again the down fall for South Australia after they won the toss and elected to bat. They slumped to be 4/24 and were never able to recover.
Patrick Page (41) and Isaac Boylan (55) were the only two SA batters to trouble the scorers as NT’s opening bowlers Lachlan Griffiths (5 for 25) and Kyle Scrimegour (3 for 30) wreaked havoc.
The run chase was close for a while, as a good bowling effort by SA saw NT 9/112, before a 58 run final wicket partnership. Number 11 batter Dylan Fuller (35 not out) was outstanding as he steered his team to victory and first innings points.
The SA bowlers were valiant in trying to defend such a modest total, with Ben Williams (3 for 22) and Michael Cormack (3 for 24) the best of them.
SA ended up getting another crack with the bat and impressed through Hayden Mullins (82) and Patrick Page (56) before stumps was called.
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 17 December, 2012 4:28PM AEST