An insipid performance with the bat from the Central West Wranglers quashed any hope of surpassing a red-hot ACT Aces side for a spot in the Plan B Regional Bash final on Sunday at the SCG.
A 32-run 71 to Aces number three Matthew Condon sealed the ACT side's nine-wicket win over the Wranglers with more than nine overs to spare, backing up his bowlers' dominance.
The toss was about the only thing which went right for the Wranglers, with captain Jameel Qureshi winning the toss and batting, only to find himself back out in the centre at number three, five balls into the innings.
Ben Sheehan was dismissed for a duck, sent back to the sheds after four deliveries, and Qureshi followed him back the next over for 6.
Sheehan's fellow opener Jaden Ekert was bowled for one off a short delivery he chopped on and Adam Ryan bizzarely ran himself out by calling for a single after hitting the ball back to the bowler to leave his side 4-24 in the sixth over.
Matt Corben and Henry Shoemark slowly set about rebuilding the innings, with Shoemark hitting two boundaries and a six onhis way to a 21-ball 26 before being caught in the deep off Broes.
That's T20 cricket for you, we didn't get enough runs. They batted better than us and bowled better than us and that's what you do to win.Wranglers' skipper Jameel Qureshi
Cavaliers' skipper Corben proved the rock of the innings for the Wranglers, hitting 25 off 39 as wickets collapsed around him, but neither he nor Wayne Sellers (25 not out off 27) could pierce the smart field placing of the Aces side.
There wasn't a weak link in the Aces bowling attack, with Scott Murn (2-20 from four) finishing with the side's best figures.
In fact, former Wrangler Nick Broes (1-21 from three) was the only bowler to go for more than a run a ball, but had a catch dropped in the outfield and two fly through a vacant first slip.
Sellers and Corben were both dismissed trying to lift the run rate, and while they managed to see the total to triple figures, the total of 7-103 was always going to struggle to be competitive.
And it did.
Matt Stephen's first over had the Aces 1-6 after bowling Ethan Bartlett first-ball, but the Aces took 10 from Mitch Taylor's first over and 16 from Ed Morrish's and continued at 10 an over from there on out.
Condon hit 14 fours and a maximum on the big SCG boundaries and was absolutely unstoppable, hitting the ball to all corners of the ground before hitting the winning runs off Connor Slattery to seal the side's route into the finals.
Skipper Jameel Qureshi said his side was "obviously disappointed", but were glad to have the chance to have a hit on the SCG.
"That's T20 cricket for you, we didn't get enough runs. They batted better than us and bowled better than us and that's what you do to win," he said.
"They bowled really well but we could have batted better. Our batting wasn't great, Corbs and Henry and Wayne did well but didn't have the support around them."
He said he thought the Wranglers weren't bad with the ball, but the hitting power of Condon being able to score all around the ground meant they were always going to struggle when he got going.
"He batted really well and took the game away from us," he said.