RSL-Colts has made the perfect start to the 2016/17 Whitney Cup season, scoring an outright win over CYMS, but captain Jason Ryan says the match was much closer than it appears.
The victory was set up on day one of the clash, where Colts wrapped up first innings points by rolling the Cougars for just 81 but day two was a much more even contest.
With nothing to lose, CYMS went on the attack and began brilliantly, taking the last five Colts wickets for just 22 runs in less than four overs to dismiss the men in red for 180.
Trailing by 99, CYMS made 210 in the second innings, with Nathan Jones taking six wickets, to make a game of it and set Colts 112 to win in 21 overs.
Some big hitting and mature batting helped Colts achieve that inside 17 overs.
“It was tougher today, the wicket was really good, so to get the 10 wickets and then get the runs was a good result and starts the season well for us,” Ryan said.
“It was very tough..they stuck to it and pushed us all game and made us work really hard for it. I said to the boys if outrights were easy they’d come every week but you don’t see them very often so to get one this early in the season is a really good result for us.”
After getting rolled early on, Colts were made to work in the field as CYMS’ second innings began well.
Lewis Matthews (27) and Brock Larance (23) added 59 for the first wicket while Thomas Nelson (38) and Ben Strachan (34) added stabilty in the middle before Ben O’Donnell (40) helped hit the Cougars to a somewhat defendable total.
Jones was the star with the ball on day two for Colts, much like Ben Semmler was when taking six wickets on day one, and Ryan was full of praise for the off-spinner.
Jones has bounced between first and second grade in recent seasons and the captain was delighted to see him take his chance.
“His position was a bit in the air early in the season and din’t train much but he came in and got six today,” he said, while adding Tom Atlee (0-41) and English import Jake Caudwell (2-41) also performed well with the ball.
With 112 to get in 21 overs Colts needed to begin the second innings with a bang and Chris Morton (31) duly obliged but it was Paul Hulthen (37 not out) and Ryan (36 not out) who showed all their experience and got the job done to seal the emphatic win and help the men in red make a statement.
“There’s a good vibe around the team at the moment,” Ryan said. “The whole club in general, the second and third graders are all doing well so it’s a really good start to the season and I’m really happy with it.”