Weedons had to work hard to overcome a battling Leeston/ Southbridge and retain the Steve Ryan Cup on Saturday, the win consolidating their hold on top spot in the Ellesmere/Malvern/ Banks Peninsula cricket competition .
Weedons batted first and were in trouble early with three wickets down before 50 runs were on the board. They recovered though and Shannon Dunnett and Stu Mcgregor put on 50, then Ben Mousley and Dunnett combined in a 90-run partnership to post 235-9.
Hamish Donkers fell early in the Leeston/Southbridge reply but this brought Jeremy Winchester to the crease. He was severe on any loose bowling and forced the Weedons bowlers into dropping short which he punished. With Karl Winter going well at the other end, he took control of the game, scoring a century.
Winter was caught at mid-on for 41 and a couple of quick wickets followed until Cam Sheet came in to steady the ship. Needing just 60 off 14 overs and with six wickets in hand, Weedons needed a breakthrough. It came when Josh Watson dismissed Sheet and Winchester was caught on the boundary. Watson picked up two more wickets to complete a five-wicket bag and Cameron Broughton and Fraser Austin claimed the final two wickets for Weedons to claim the win by 20 runs.
In other matches, a great knock from club stalwart Andrew Inch saw South Malvern rack up more than 300 against Greendale, which, despite a bludgeoning 70 from Blair Chapman, proved too much and Greendale lost by 145 runs.
Diamond Harbour got back to winning ways in a low-scoring match at Lincoln. Hugh Paterson had a nice double for Lincoln with 5-25 and 37 with the bat but Sam Swartz, 58, and captain Rob Anderson's 4-10 ensured Diamond Harbour avenged their first round loss.
Dunsandel had a good day at the office, with Garren Fyfe scoring 128 against Kirwee. Chris Dalziel took 6-42 as they recorded just their second victory of the season, which was well deserved.
Going into the last round, Greendale could sneak a semifinal spot but have to beat Kirwee and hope that South Malvern beat Leeston/Southbridge. Weedons, South Malvern and Diamond Harbour are through but only Weedons are assured of a home semi. Lincoln will hope to win the Steve Ryan Cup for the second time this season as they travel to Weedons on Saturday.
Weedons 235-9 (S Dunnett 85, B Mousley 37) beat Leeston/ Southbridge 215 (J Winchester 100, J Watson 5-33)
Diamond Harbour 143 (S Swartz 58; H Paterson 5-25) beat Lincoln 116 (H Paterson 37; R Anderson 4-10, C Letham 3-28)
Dunsandel 240-8 (G Fyfe 128, S McDermott 41; A Philpott 3-39) beat Kirwee 161 (G Cridge 32; C Dalziel 6-42)
South Malvern 320-8 (A Inch 83, T Dalley 2-30) beat Greendale 165 (B Chapman 70, J Chapman 2-23)
With one round to go: Weedons 100, South Malvern 90, Diamond Harbour 80, Leeston/Southbridge 70, Greendale 65, Lincoln 50, Kirwee 40, Dunsandel 25.
- (Live Matches)