Bates and Leigh at bat on July 10. Photo supplied

Bates and Leigh at bat on July 10. Photo supplied

Cricket season in full swing in Campbell River

Next game on Saturday at Carihi Secondary School

Cricket season is in full swing for the Campbell River Cricket Club.

On July 10, two intriguing cricket matches were played at Carihi Playing Fields. The first match was an introduction to cricket for six new players who had either never, or seldom, played the game before. This match was contested in the exciting six-a-side format which allows every player to both bat and bowl. Newcomers Dana Dunsmore, Kelsey Leigh, Mike Bradley, Ray Wilson, Bob Jacques and Brent Lamour were mixed with regular club members to make two evenly matched sides.

Team Heenatigala batted first and set a challenging total of 78 runs for Team Jepson to chase. The highlights of this innings were an exciting opening partnership with Bates and Leigh scoring 41 runs off just 20 balls, and the bowling performance of Dunsmore who, despite never having bowled before, showed what a great all-round athlete she was by taking three wickets and not conceding any runs off her 15 balls bowled.

Opening pair of batters for Side Jepson, Wilson and Jaques, were restricted to only 11 runs by some tight bowling from Pomeroy and Leigh who also captured her first wicket. Dunsmore and Lamour carried the score to 31 runs, including two massive sixes from Dunsmore, leaving final pair Jepson and Farmer needing to score 47 to win the match. In a nail biting final five balls Jepson managed to score 20 runs, which carried his team past Team Heenatigala by a slender two run margin.

Four of the new players then joined CRCC’s regular players for an intra-club match. Two strong teams took to the field for a full 11-a-side 30 over match, which turned out to be even more closely contested than the previous one. Batting first Team O’Shannessy set a tough target of 180 runs in their 30 overs at bat. Simon Deller and Aaron O’Shannessy both scored half centuries and Dunsmore followed up her earlier success by hitting another six off one of the regular club bowlers.

After a steady start, the Club President’s team found it was well behind the required run rate of six runs per over. With only seven overs left 80 more runs were needed when Jepson and Gabby Mason came in to bat. This pair started accumulating quick runs, until Jepson was bowled out by debutante player Dunsmore. Adam Panziera joined Mason with the seemingly impossible task of scoring 31 runs off the last 12 balls. This was reduced to needing six off the last ball to tie the match. Astonishingly Panziera managed to hit a six off the last ball, and because the ball was judged by the umpire to be a high delivery one bonus run was scored, resulting in a single run victory.

The new players adapted quickly to the game, and we hope that they will all continue to play regular cricket for the club, having had a taste for the sport. We are particularly excited to have Dunsmore and Leigh, two female players, joining the game. On 15th August we will be holding a club family day at Carihi with two all-female teams playing each other at 10am before the Club hosts it Annual Salty’s Six-a-side Tournament from Noon onward.

Our next competitive home match at Carihi is on 24th July, when the Masters team will be playing against a visiting Masters side from Cowichan where the teams will commence battle for the Annual Joe’s Pharmacy Challenge Cup. This game starts at Noon.

On the weekend of July 17, Campbell River Second XI men’s cricket team made the trip to Metchosin Cricket Ground to play against the local side. Captain Jos Bell was fortunate to have such a diverse bowling attack with some truly powerful pace bowling in Gabby Mason and Tharuka Jayalath.

To complement the pure speed was our three spin bowlers, Jimmy Stephen, Aadil Dhansay and Rahul Reddy. This style of bowling is a real art and akin to knuckle ball pitchers in baseball.

Captain Bell brought himself on for a few overs late in the inning and claimed 2 wickets for just 7 runs. Man of the hour was Mike Smith who scored an unbeaten 77 and lead Metchosin Cricket Club to a first innings total of 229.

With a very large total to chase, opening batsmen Aaron O’Shannessy and Adam Panziera set out to chip away at the target adding 60 between them.

Next in was the man of the match, Justin Black, who has played fewer than a half dozen games in his life. He shocked everyone, including himself, to score 99 runs.

Many players and spectators commented that his innings was one of the most enjoyable to watch characterized by power hitting and innovative stroke play.

Highlights were his huge hits that landed in neighboring paddocks and the nearby farmer’s market. This sensational innings combined with late cameos from Rahul Reddy and Jos Bell helped CRCC to win comfortably. A huge thank you must go to Metchosin Cricket Club for hosting CRCC, who went above and beyond making the guests comfortable providing a post-match BBQ and beverages galore that capped off a brilliant day of competitive but enjoyable cricket.

The second of the two-leg series will conclude on September 10 at the Carihi High Cricket Ground.

To learn more about the cricket community go to https://crcricket.club/

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marc.kitteringham@campbellrivermirror.com

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