Narrabri skipper Lachlan Cameron said he didn’t mind where the War Veterans Cup final was held – as long as they were in it.
They are, and will host the decider for the second time in three years, after thrashing Armidale by eight wickets in Sunday’s final round.
After routing the visitors for just 115, Narrabri chased down the runs inside 25 overs and for the loss of only two wickets.
Cameron had the satisfaction of being there at the end as they achieved their finals mission, and emphatically bounced back from a disappointing last round loss to Inverell.
The celebrations were heightened when the news filtered through that Inverell had beaten Gunnedah in the other game.
Third on the table going into the round behind Gunnedah and Tamworth, who had the bye, Narrabri’s superior run-rate saw them finish on top.
“It’s great (to host the final). But to tell you the truth I was just happy to make it there, whether it was home or away,” Cameron said.
Nathan Trindall (2-16) set the foundation before Jake Brayshaw (3-36) and Chris Sargent (3-14) spun their way through the Armidale middle and lower order with support from Ryan O’Neill (2-24).
“We very patient. We bowled to the plan and sort of accumulated wickets throughout the innings, without destroying them at any time,” Cameron said.
He said all the bowlers just did their job, some in different roles to what they are accustomed to.
“Ryan O’Neill played a bit of a different role, we changed him up after two overs,” he said.
“We thought a bit of extra pace with Nathan would be a better chance against one of their openers.”
That theory proved correct with Trindall striking in his first over.
Sargent also played a bit of a different role, with Cameron using him as his sixth bowler.
The small totals can often be the most trickiest to chase but Cameron’s message to his side was to “just go out there and bat”.
Both naturally aggressive players, openers Nick Smart (35) and Coby Cornish (19) took advantage of that licence blasting 52 off the first nine overs. Cornish fell not long after Smart, but Cameron (32no) and Tom Craig (24no) polished off the remaining runs.
The win capped off a successful weekend for Cameron after his Civeo side beat Crossroads in the local competition on Saturday night.
Chasing Crossroads’ 4-141, which was set up by Mark Fielder (20), Tim Hayne (45) and Sargent (38), Civeo replied with 7-142.
Jordyn Mowle hit the winning runs off a dropped catch at deep mid-on with three balls remaining after a 16 run cameo.
Smart smacked 40 at the top of the order before Steven Page (21) and Aronn Baker (24) kept things going in the middle order.
In Friday night’s game Tatts thumped RSL.
After posting 5-105, Tatts routed RSL for just 38, Mick Dowdell (20) the only batsmen to make double figures.
The Tatts bowlers shared the spoils around with Rod Kirk picking up three wickets, and Brock Schwager and Jonty Schwager two.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.