A lot of unknowns involved

March 09, 2018

Katandra wicket keeper Luke Nolan has notched up plenty of runs with the bat this season and has aims for that to continue this weekend.

Kyabram has only played one innings against Katandra this season, but it was enough to give the Redbacks valuable intel on how to approach this weekend’s opposition.

The two sides have only met once prior to the approaching Haisman Shield preliminary final at Katandra Recreation Reserve, with the second week of the round eight clash cancelled due to severe storms.

Although the match ended in a draw, Kyabram captain Alec Young said the side pinpointed some factors to help its attempt to reach its first Cricket Shepparton grand final.

Charlie McClay produced a phenomenal performance to record figures of 6-53 as Katandra was kept to 243 from 67.4 overs.

‘‘I think we started that innings really well and there were a couple of batsmen that we hadn’t seen a lot of before, they got away from us, but obviously come this weekend it’s a good thing for us to have plans for that,’’ Young said.

‘‘Hopefully we can execute them and keep them at a score we can chase or make enough runs that we can defend.’’

Hadleigh Sirett and Michael Peters went on to make half-centuries late in the game, which Kyabram will be looking to avoid.

But the side is in impressive form as the Redbacks approach what they hope will be their penultimate match of the season.

Following a steady knock with the bat against Central Park-St Brendan’s last week, the Redbacks’ bowling attack was sensational, never allowing the Tigers to take control of the game.

Given the strength of both sides’ bowlers, Katandra captain Jedd Wright said success depended on each side’s top order.

‘‘They’re a good team and bowling’s our strength too, I’d say it’ll be decided on if one of the top six bats of either side can progress,’’ he said.

While it was not an official second chance as was awarded to Central Park-St Brendan’s for being the highest-ranked loser, the Eagles know they are fortunate to be playing this week.

A paltry score of 108 was enough to keep the Northerners at bay in the qualifying final and put Katandra into a preliminary final.

If nothing else, Wright said it showed the Eagles could be accountable no matter the circumstances.

‘‘It was pretty disappointing, but we got over the line, we don’t take too much out of it except that if we bowl well we can defend any total,’’ he said.

Luke Nolan looks to continue his brilliant form this season, while Chris Skolyarev will be keen to be the one to stand up after a lean season, excluding his knock of 95 in the final round.

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