Four more confirmed for T20 showcase
Finalists from Victoria, ACT and Adelaide decided for national competition in March following an action packed weekend of T20 cricket
21 January 2019, 04:36 PM AEST
Four more Premier Cricket teams around Australia booked their place in the finals of the Fox Cricket National Premier Twenty20 competition on Sunday.
The Dandenong Panthers and Carlton Blues progressed from Victoria, East Torrens triumphed in South Australia, while Tuggeranong Valley moved through from the ACT.
That means a total of seven teams have now been confirmed for the T20 showcase to be held on March 5 and 6 at the Karen Rolton Oval precinct in Adelaide, with the clubs that will represent Western Australia, Queensland and Tasmania still to be confirmed.
In Melbourne, the action was spread between Carlton and St Kilda and fans at both venues were treated to some big hitting from a host of quality players.
Melbourne Stars representative Evan Gulbis smashed seven fours and six sixes on his way to a match-winning 89 for Carlton in the semi-finals of the competition at Princes Park and it was a 70 from Tom Smyth that helped the Blues progress with an easy victory over Geelong in the final of the Renegades conference.
Across town at the Junction Oval it was Dandenong who prevailed, with the Panthers knocking off Prahran in the morning, before returning to defeat St Kilda in a thrilling climax to the Stars conference final.
The Panthers posted 9-140 from their 20 overs and St Kilda looked to be on their way to victory with Melbourne Stars youngster Jon Merlo at the crease on 65 not out and less than 50 runs required.
But Merlo fell to a superb caught and bowled to Englishman Karl Carver and that triggered a collapse of wickets as Dandenong held on for the victory.
Carlton and Dandenong will now play each other in the Super Slam final at the MCG this Sunday, which will feature as a curtain raiser to the KFC BBL clash between the Melbourne Stars and the Brisbane Heat.
In Adelaide, South Australian batsman Jake Lehman starred as East Torrens defeated Port Adelaide at Karen Rolton Oval.
Lehmann smashed 13 fours and one six during his 42-ball knock of 84 as East Torrens successfully chased down Port Adelaide's competitive score of 5-193 with a solitary over remaining.
Austin Umpherston paced Port Adelaide's innings with a brilliant 111 that included eight sixes, but he was undone by a brilliant piece of fielding from Lehmann and run out late in the innings.
At Phillip Oval in Canberra it was Tuggeranong Valley that came out on top with a 14-run triumph over Ginninderra in the final.
Former Queensland and Brisbane Heat player Jason Floros contributed 3-16 in the decider, while it was his younger brother Timmy that stole the show on an exciting day in the nation's capital.
Timmy Floros scored a brilliant century in the semi-final to help Tuggeranong Valley beat ANU and he backed that up with 40 and 1-19 from four overs in the final to help his side hold on in a thrilling final over.
The four successful clubs from the weekend now join Steve Smith's Sutherland and Sydney University from Sydney and the City Cyclones from the NT Strike League as clubs to have progressed to the national finals in March, with the remaining three spots to be decided by February 3, when the last State Final – in Western Australia – is played.