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Shepparton seeks redemption in final

The opportunity for redemption comes today for Cricket Shepparton’s under-16A outfit.

PATRICK O'MEARA January 10, 2013 4:15am

The opportunity for redemption comes today for Cricket Shepparton’s under-16A outfit.

After a comprehensive humbling at the hands of arch-rival Bendigo District, Shepparton will get another crack at the same outfit in the Junior Country Week final at Seymour’s Kings Park.

The two teams have built quite a rivalry.

This Shepparton outfit knocked over Bendigo in last year’s under-16B final before both teams progressed to the next age group.

Bendigo took yesterday’s first shot at redemption at Strathdale’s Bell Park.

Shepparton was sent into bat and looked in a strong position early at 1-60.

But it all went pear-shaped from there.

An eighth-wicket partnership of 35 between Zane Thorne (21) and Steven Valentin (18) pushed Shepparton’s total out to 129.

In response, Bendigo needed just 26 overs to pass the total four wickets down.

Rhiley Lau took two wickets, while Brayden McGregor was the pick of the bowlers with 1-20 off five overs.

Shepparton coach Grant Allen described it a dirty day.

‘‘The boys just weren’t switched on,’’ Allen said.

‘‘I don’t know whether it was just because it was a dead rubber, or what, but it wasn’t a real good performance.’’

He said his side had failed to create momentum all day.

‘‘We just consistently lost wickets all day,’’ he said.

‘‘Then Bendigo simply played well.

‘‘They hit the bad balls to the boundary and made the most of playing on a smaller ground.’’

He praised the partnership of Thorne and Valentin.

‘‘They made the score look a bit more respectable,’’ Allen said.

‘‘But too many of the other boys threw their wickets away.’’

Allen said he was confident his side could bounce back in today’s decider.

‘‘We will go in with a better attitude,’’ he said.

‘‘We had beaten them the last two times before that, then they got their revenge yesterday.

‘‘Hopefully we can turn it around on them today.’’

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