A stirring fightback from Melville's lower order has put them in a commanding position after the first day of Hamilton club cricket's Eddy Marr Bowl competition.
On day one of their two-day clash against Rodeo Rodeo Suburbs at Jansen Park on Saturday, Gallagher Melville made a brilliant recovery with the bat then ripped through the Suburbs lineup to now be thinking about enforcing the follow-on this weekend.
After winning the toss and batting, Melville's top six failed to fire and they found themselves well on the back foot at 73-6 then 100-7, with Suburbs' seamers enjoying success.
However, captain Hayden Cargo, batting at No 7, and No 9 Mitchell Dickeson combined for a brilliant eighth wicket partnership of 143 to steal the initiative.
The pair were at the crease together for 30 overs, scoring at a brisk rate, with Cargo hitting 12 fours in his 80 and Dickeson eight fours and two sixes, before being the last man out for 76 as Melville got to 249 in 73.4 overs.
Brad Perrett took the last wicket to finish with 5-76 off 19.4 overs, while left-armer Richard Genge collected 3-42 off 20. With the momentum firmly in their favour, Melville then went on the charge with the ball.
Opening the bowling, spinner Nikhil Vishwanath claimed 3-15 off seven overs, while seamer Toa Davis took 3-10 off four, as Suburbs crumbled to be 58-7.
No 3 Mattie Thomas is unbeaten on 30 but his side have plenty of work to do, with 92 runs still required to avoid the follow-on.
The Quadrant Star University will look to build on their 54-run lead against Ricoh Old Boys at Galloway Park.
A poor batting display from Old Boys led to their dismissal for 113 in 45.2 overs.
Seamer Ben Speake took 3-8 off six overs, while there were two wickets apiece for Steven Cullingworth, Devon Singh-Parhar and Simon Ashplant.
Star made a solid start with the bat, with opener Speake making 54, though after he departed left-arm spinner Jono Whitley (3-27 off 10 overs) did some damage late in the day to keep Old Boys clinging on to some hope.
In the other match, also at Galloway Park, some powerful hitting from Joe Walker got Fraser-Tech to 247 against Lonestar Hamilton Boys' High School.
Seamer Matt Wallbank took four wickets as Tech were reduced to 142-7, but then a 62-run partnership between captain Prakash Gosai (20) and Walker got Tech back into the contest.
Walker then let loose to find the boundary regularly, before he was out for 76, as Tech got through to 247 in 94.2 overs.
In reply HBHS are 64-1.
EDDY MARR BOWL Round 1, day 1 Fraser-Tech 247 (J Walker 76, J McDonald 41; M Wallbank 4-50) vs HBHS 64-1 Melville 249 (H Cargo 80, M Dickeson 76; B Perrett 5-76, R Genge 3-42) vs Suburbs 58-7 (T Davis 3-10, N Vishwanath 3-15) Old Boys 113 (B Speake 3-8) vs Star University 167-6 (B Speake 54; J Whitley 3-27)
- Waikato Times
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