Tamworth Gold and Blue representative sides almost made a clean sweep of their Gunnedah and Armidale opposition on home turf on Sunday.
In an almost perfect start to the Northern Inland junior representative season all three Gold sides won their fixtures against Gunnedah while the Blue under 12s and under 16s enjoyed wins over their Armidale counterparts.
UNDER 16 BLUE
The Blues’ set up their six wicket win in the first session, having Armidale 7-46.
“I said to them it’s probably the best session they’ve had in last couple of years,” coach James Haling said.
“They really just bowled good lines and made the batsmen continually play.”
Campbell Newby (2-26) and James Gibson (1-14) bowled really well with the new ball and were superbly backed up by Matt Tomlinson (1-11) and James Edmunds (2-10) as they rolled Armidale for 95.
A late call-up, Edmunds was Haling’s man of the match. As well as bowling on the spot he took some good catches and saved three or four boundaries.
They then had a couple of hiccups early in their run chase but polished off the runs in 21 overs on the back of a fine unbeaten 57 from Noah Pitt.
“He batted well. He showed good defence and played some good attacking shots when he got the loose balls,” Haling said.
UNDER 16 GOLD
The Peter Mead and Bede Maher-coached side had a bit of a late wobble chasing Gunnedah’s 162, losing 3-4 at one stage, but Will Burnett (5no) and Hamish Heeney (9no) were able to find the boundary a couple of times and keep out some good deliveries to get them home.
Luke Maher (28) and Joey Ryan (22) had given them a great start with a 45 run opening partnership. Mitch Henderson (50) and Lachlan Wesierski (20) then put on 52 for the third wicket to have the chase well in hand, Henderson batting “beautifully” for his half-century.
“We were looking good and then that’s what happens in cricket matches – it can turn very quickly,” Mead said.
The catalysts for the turnaround were Oscar King (2-32) and skipper Adam McGuirk (3-33).
McGuirk was earlier the backbone of Gunnedah’s innings with a brilliant 110.
Oscar Spinks snared 2-25 and Jayden Betts 2-28 while Joey Mead (1-16) bowled tightly in the middle.
UNDER 14 BLUE
Chasing Armidale’s 9-158 the Blue got away to a bright start with Sam Fox (16) and Isabella Cameron (12) putting on 33 for the first wicket. But things fell away after that and they could only muster 127 with Callum Henry (18) and Thomas Laird (19) the only other batsmen to reach double figures.
Earlier extras hurt them, contributing 47 to Armidale’s total. Landan Price, Jack Hamilton and Killien Apen each snared two wickets while Matt Holmes bowled well but without luck, finishing with 1-12 from his nine overs.
UNDER 14 GOLD
Ben Chick’s almost run a ball 70 anchored the Gold to a very competitive 7-208. The last wicket to fall, he was well supported along the way by Zac Craig (20), Nick Mead (26), Charlie Henderson (25) and Adam Williams (16no).
Alasdair Hewitt (3-24) and Claire McGuirk (2-30) topped the wickets for Gunnedah, McGuirk just missing a hat-trick.
Their run chase then never really got going under the strain of some tight bowling early from Eion Shepherd (1-17) and Sam Murphy (1-13). Sam Anderson (2-3), Williams (2-8) and Craig (2-8) continued the charge to dismiss the visitors for 65, Jayden Winsor’s 25 the best.
UNDER 12 BLUE
The Blue had contributors right down the innings as they posted 6-178 from their 40 overs with Blake Scicluna hitting 20, Charlie Fox 34, Harry Lewington 35 and Logan Spinks 35.
They then restricted Armidale to 4-149, Charlie Whale (2-7) leading the charge.
Mitchell Duddy carried his bat for an unbeaten half-century while Jonathon Phelps made 33.
UNDER 12 GOLD
Batting first the Gold compiled 4-173, Charlie Stone batting brilliantly for an unbeaten 67 and sharing a 74 run second wicket partnership with Liam Bramley (34).
He also put on 44 with Tom Aitken (12) and 42 with Bailey Simpson (18) to complete the innings.
In reply Gunnedah could only manage 9-123, Mitchell Herden top-scoring with 22 while Toby Ison and Aitken snared two wickets apiece.