A pair of blazing centuries from Shaun Downie and Luke Carter have helped Murray Valley thunder back into contention for a fifth straight Bendigo Country Week title.By Damen Francis
A pair of blazing centuries from Shaun Downie and Luke Carter have helped Murray Valley thunder back into contention for a fifth straight Bendigo Country Week title.
After a disappointing opening day defeat to Ferntree Gully, the reigning champion showed Benalla no mercy yesterday, piling on 7-346.
Skipper Downie led from the front pummelling 144 and sharing in a monster partnership with Carter, who made 111.
In reply, Benalla batted out its overs, but made little attempt to chase down the mammoth total and reached 4-154 by the close of play.
Murray Valley team manager Kevin Thewlis had little doubt about what won his side the game.
‘‘We had a couple of blokes that instead of getting starts went on to make big scores and big scores generally win you games,’’ Thewlis.
‘‘Shaun and Luke are two of the best players we’ve got in the association with the bat and they’re the ones that can go out and win the game for us.’’
It was clear from the start Murray Valley intended to make the most of excellent batting conditions at Eaglehawk and hit its way into form.
Openers Stewart Thompson (42) and Kieran Andrew (15) raced to 58 without loss inside eight overs and while both fell in quick succession there was no respite for the Benalla bowlers.
Downie and Carter carried on the momentum and put on 222 for the third-wicket.
In what was a tough day for the Benalla bowlers, Mark O’Brien finished with 3-55 from 10 overs.
As if Benalla’s task was not hard enough, Ash Quinn dismissed Jackman Hinss for a duck in the first over.
From there on Benalla adopted a conservative approach, with Andrew Startin (56), Jack Egan (47 not out) and Greg Hoysted (39) helping their side see out its 50 overs.
The only downside to the day for Murray Valley was it was unable to take 10 wickets.
‘‘Benalla were coming off a bit of a disappointing day yesterday (Monday) .
‘‘The disappointing thing about that as far as we’re concerned is the fact that we only got four wickets, which doesn’t help our bonus point situation.’’
The result sets up a crucial clash with the undefeated Goulburn Murray Cricket today.
Goulburn Murray had little trouble seeing off Castlemaine at Huntly yesterday.
Skipper Dylan Cuttriss tore through the top-order, with 3-55, as Castlemaine was all out for 145.
Only opener Ian Garsed (67) showed any resistance, while Liam Ringin grabbed 3-13.
Brendan Prendergast (53) scored his second half-century in as many days, as Goulburn Murray passed the score with five wickets in hand, finishing the day 7-196.
Police have released an image of a man they wish to speak to following an incident at SPC Ardmona in Shepparton, involving a package later found to be non-threatening.
Most people at the J C Lowe Oval left on Saturday evening talking about the game but not the result. Pigeon Coach Chris Kennedy summed up the feeling adequately when he said after the game; “it was a frustrating game, but my players weren’t responsible for the frustration.”
The move to extend the Tatura War Memorial area and honour Victoria Cross hero Robert Mactier with the erection of a statue in the Hogan St gardens named in his honour, continues.
A Kyabram man who struck a cyclist on Echuca-Moama bridge with a beer can thrown from the vehicle he was in was convicted and fined $400 in Moama Local Court on Wednesday.
A Rochester mother told a health forum about the devastating effect drugs have had on her family.
Over six hours of junior football is scheduled for Kyabram Recreation Reserve this Sunday.
Ten people were injured after Two Australian Light Armoured Vehicles (ASLAV) collided during a training course at the Puckapunyal Military Training Range in on Wednesday, May 22.
The Finley Apex Sports and Community Centre has secured a $500,000 grant from Regional Development Australia.
A purpose-built bike, equipped with amateur radio, will be on the O'Keefe Rail Trail tomorrow.
Cobram residents John Anderson and Ian Cobb will race down memory lane this weekend when they compete in the annual Historic Winton.
Deniliquin Fire and Rescue's open day has been hailed a success by captain Bill Muirhead.
The Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) is investigating incidents of abortion or still-births under the Lamb and Kid Mortality Surveillance Project.(LKSMP).
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