NSW Country backed up its effort with the bat with the ball at Bundaberg yesterday to remain on target for back to back Australian Country Cricket Championship titles.
The Bush Blues head into today’s rest day still on top of the table after procuring a 132 -run first innings win over East Asia Pacific at West Bundaberg Recreations Ground 3 yesterday.
It won’t be a rest day for three of the players though, with Tamworth keeper Tom Groth, Parkes allrounder Pat Rosser and Newcastle’s Josh Bennett named in the ACCC XI side to take on the Queensland Bulls Masters in the annual invitational game.
Rosser and Bennett were two of the stars of NSWC’s win over EAP.
After Rosser had blasted 110 to help the Bush Blues set EAP a victory target of 332, Bennett shone, snaring 5-60 as they dismissed EAP for 199.
The paceman had put NSWC on the front foot late on the first day with two valuable wickets to have EAP 2-35 overnight.
Yesterday it took them a while to break through, with EAP’S third wicket pairing adding 66.
But once they did, they rolled through them fairly well and, once again, Bennett was the man.
“He took the first five wickets of their innings,” NSWC manager Ron Hancock said.
“He bowled unchanged from the start of play through to lunch.”
He bowled 21 of the 63 overs it took to bowl EAP out.
“He bowled a good line and length and with good pace,” Hancock said.
Rosser showed his allround capabilities, chiming in with 2-21, while Graham Batty did likewise with 2-24.
Batty then went out and made 43 to help NSWC to 4-128 in its second innings with 10 overs remaining.
Pat Darwen was at that stage unbeaten on 30-odd.
NSWC has two games remaining and plays Northern Territory tomorrow.
It then faces Victoria on Monday in what is shaping as a clash for the title, with the Victorians currently running second.