Cats gain an edge over finalist

By Southern Riverina News

Finley have gained themselves a mental edge heading into the Murray Valle Cricket Association Division One finals with a tight 14 run win against fourth placed Cobram-Yarroweyah United.

Batting first on their home deck at the Finley Apex Sport & Community Centre, the Cats got off to a shaky start with Adnan Malik (four) falling early.

Paul Massingham (30) and Cougar McGrath (18) eased their way into the game putting on 48 before both fell in quick succession.

The Cats’ middle order struggled against the spinning ball and the visitors were well and truly on top with six Cats wickets back in the pavilion with the score under 90.

Duncan Clarke and Archie Mason (seven) hung around and picked the right shots to play and put on a further 25 before Mason was bowled.

Anthony King (11) and Clarke picked up the rate and when the latter was dismissed for 33 off the last ball of the innings they had managed to get the Cats to a defendable score of 131 off their 40 overs.

The Cats had to bowl well and CYU got off to a flying start, punishing anything that was a fraction short, motoring along to 1/27 off the first six overs.

With a change in bowling Clarke and King were able to tighten things up and when King produced a double wicket maiden when the score was on 46 the Cats were back in the game.

With a solid 40 run partnership in the 12 overs after drinks the visitors had regained the upper hand and were putting the Cats bowlers under pressure.

When the Cats claimed a run out it started a batting collapse, with McGrath and Massingham mopping up the young CYU tail to have them all out in the 40th over for 117.

The win keeps the Cats in the hunt for the minor premiership sitting second behind Katunga by 0.02 of a percentage.

In the final round of the home and away season this Saturday, Division One host the Deni Rhinos while the Division Two Cats, who had the bye last week, head to Cobram to take on CYU.