By Glenn Davey
17 October 2017
The 1sts travelled to Geelong for Round 2 and unleashed a comprehensive performance to convincingly regain the “Two Bob” Shield. Set a target of 232 to win on a ground with an excellent pitch and fast outfield, FPCC showed a new style of skill and application with the bat to comfortably record the win with 7 wickets in hand and 15 balls to spare.
After the early loss of Matt Gapes (15); Liam Tonkin (101 off 102 balls) and Gordan Waterfall (34) added 69 runs for the second wicket. Tonkin then combined with Jaime Brohier (50* off 63 balls) to add 88 for the third wicket and take control of the run chase.
Tonkin chose a perfect occasion to record his maiden Premier 1st XI Century, launching 4 x 4’s and 5 x 6’s to smack a run a ball century. To fittingly match the style of his innings, Tonkin launched the Geelong spinner with an inside out six over cover to bring up his century.
Tonkin was unlucky to be dismissed next ball, after cleanly hitting a low ball to cover that was caught just above the ground. With the score at 3/183, Brohier then combined with Victorian Country U19 representative Brodie Symons (24* off 30 balls) to reach the target.
The result was set up in the first innings with an energetic fielding display that limited many run scoring opportunities, along with a collective bowling effort highlighted by Nick Boland (2/42 off 10), Jackson Mockett (1/19 off 5), Will Crowder (1/19 off 4), Dale Elmi (1/34 off 8) and Ben Ashkenazi (1/56 off 10).
Geelong 2nds got away to a flying start at Butler Oval, quickly reaching 0/94. However the FPCC bowling group fought back with great application, led by Nathan Harford (2/31) and 2nd XI debutants Max Cairns (2/43 off 10) and Ryan Hammel (2/20 off 6) who all pegged back the run scoring in the middle overs and took crucial wickets.
Captain Billy Humphrey (2/19 off 8.2) and Jake Wood (1/32 off 9) then returned to wrap up the innings, and restrict Geelong to 10/202 off 47.2 overs.
Similar to the first innings, the opening batsmen were not troubled, with Nick Mann (35 off 90 balls) and Nathan Harford (89 off 105 balls, 12 fours) combining for 118 runs for the opening partnership.
Harford batted with great aggression, to punish any loose deliveries to the boundary. However when he was trapped LBW by the spinner, a middle order collapse of 5/28 turned a very comfortable run chase into a tight affair with a run a ball required off the last six overs.
Up stepped debutant Ryan Hammel, who added to his efforts with the ball earlier to now take the game away from Geelong with the bat. Fresh from competing with Victorian Country U17’s last month in Brisbane, Ryan took time to establish himself into his innings, before unleashing some amazing power hitting rarely seen from someone his age at this level.
With all the pressure on his shoulders and with only three wickets in hand, Hammel dispatched the opening bowler for consecutive sixes over long off into the construction site to end the match in style with 14 balls remaining, it what was a memorable win for the young side.
The thirds travelled to Geelong who scored 6/213 off 45 overs batting first, with Aidan Wheeler (3/40 off 9) and Aaron McIlroy (2/20 off 6) the best with the ball. In reply, FPCC could only reach 10/165 off 42.4 overs, with Aidan Wheeler (34 off 85 balls) and Matt Robertson (31 off 33 balls) top scoring.
Geelong 4ths got away to a rapid start at Jubilee Park, to quickly reach 0/117. However, a series a wickets through the middle order late in the innings restricted the total to 9/238 off 45 overs which would still prove to be a challenge. Spinners Josh Peet (3/34 off 9) and Simon Draycott (3/21 off 7) were most effective with the ball.
In reply Morne O’Donoghue batted with power to quickly score 61 with 10 boundaries. He was supported by Liam Bennett (25) and Simon Draycott (29), but the side finished 48 runs short of the target at 9/190.
In Round 1, FPCC had a slow start to the season with all four grades falling to local rivals Dandenong.
The 1sts made 10/148 off 47.4 (Liam Tonkin 56, Nick Boland 24) vs Dandenong 3/152 off 39.3 (Ben Ashkenazi 2/26, Dale Elmi 1/23).
The 2nds made 10/214 (Will Crowder 93, Rob Salerni 28) vs Dandenong 1/215 (Ben Frith 1/30).
The 3rds made 10/79 off 34.4 on a challenging surface (Aidan Wheeler 22, Tim Drummond 13, Jack Lavery 14*), before reducing Dandenong to 8/71. Dandenong then secured the extra 9 runs required to seal a tightly fought low scoring contest. Rohan Simpson (4/28 off 5) and Jack Lavery (2/16 off 6) did best with the ball.
The 4ths recovered from 4/23 to reach 10/147 off 30.3 overs (Brown 32, Singh 24, Draycott 21). Dandenong just got over the line in the run chase, reaching 8/152 with 14 balls to spare, aided by an astounding 51 extras including 42 wides. Perminder Singh (4/21 off 9) and Leon Davis (2/29 off 7) led the way with the ball.
In Round 3, FPCC take on Northcote and will look to extend the momentum generated in Round 2 against Geelong. The 1sts and 3rds will be at home on Saturday, the 2nds at home on Sunday, and the 4ths away on Saturday.
The 1sts will also welcome Derbyshire import Tom Wood to the side in Round 3, with Tom arriving safely to Melbourne yesterday morning.