JASON Green's stubborn 89 was without reward when Macquarie finished 29 runs short of their target against RSL-Colts at No.3 Oval.
With 227 the figure the Blues needed to win in 57 overs, Green laboured on a pitch that kept low for the most part and it was probably one of his more patient digs.
With points at a premium going into the final stages of the preliminary rounds, Green needed to have someone work around him to get the runs they needed.
Unfortunately that didn't happen; Dan Medway got a start but was stumped by Jason Ryan off Greg Buckley for 24 and Mark Reichelt (15) and Oliver Hoare (15) made some impression but the loss of vital wickets at regular intervals lifted the spirits of Colts.
That confidence lifted to a new level when Green had his castle knocked over by Tim Cox and the Blues were 7-185.
They then lost their last three wickets for 13 runs and were all out for 198 in the 52nd over.
Colts captain Chris Morton said it was a good win considering his side had to search for quick runs in the first 19 overs on Saturday after only 38 of the 75 overs were possible after rain the previous week.
"At 2-109 from last week we wanted something to give them to chase and we were satisfied with 226 and that was about six an over," he said.
"We were also playing on a wicket that didn't allow the ball to get up so there weren't too many runs square of the wicket, unless you were prepared to take a risk."
Brad Cox added 14 to his overnight score to finish with top score of 53 for Colts and Greg Buckley went from 16 to 37.
Morton added another 38 and Jacob Bruce's 20 was also useful.
In those 19 overs Colts had to bat, they scored 117 runs for the loss of three wickets and their 226 looked the goods with the Blues 3-55 from 18 overs.
But Green kept plugging away, waiting for anything loose and delivering.
He hit eight fours and three sixes in his innings and was particularly keen to see more of Greg Buckley whose last over cost him 13 runs with Green going over the top in successive balls.
Of the Colts bowlers, Tim Cox as we see week in, week out was never far from the mark. He finished with 3-28 from 10 overs - all three scalps coming in successive overs for the cost of six runs.
The other bowlers used all did the job with Buckley finishing with 2-52 from 18 and Nathan Jones and Chris Morton also getting two wickets.
It should also be remembered that the Blues were without three of their best young players with Declan Hoare, Andrew Page and Kieran Brien all away with Western Zone Colts in Wollongong.
This was a good game of cricket and another reason why Dubbo Cricket's move to play more two-day games this season has to be applauded.
The batsmen had to work for their runs, it was the same for bowlers.
If the final three rounds of cricket are any indication of this one, then we should see some great matches in the coming weeks before the finals on successive weekends - March 16 to 17 and March 23 to 24.