Cats blow past Cobram

By Daniel Hughes

Despite losing the toss for the third time in a row, the Murray Valley Cricket Association Division One Finley Cats were able to breeze past Cobram by eight wickets on the weekend.
After Cats’ captain Cougar McGrath lost the toss, Finley were sent out into the field to a confident Cobram batting line up.
This however was short lived, as a strong performance in the field and with the ball stirred the Cats to take care of Cobram for just 72 runs.
Quick and consistent bowling from the Cats’ opening duo of Bailey Coombs and Darcy Webb saw the first three wickets fall in 13 overs.
After the Cobram middle order got away with some freebie dropped catches from McGrath’s keeping gloves behind the stumps, the Cats rallied together in the field.
Coombs’ hands seemed to have a magnet to the ball as they swallowed four catches throughout the Cats’ innings on the field.
Young paceman and up and coming gun for the Cats Eddie ‘The Eagle’ Haynes soared through the Tigers’ middle and bottom order in an economical spell, taking three wickets for just three runs off the same amount of overs, earning him the Cats’ player of the game.
With just 72 to chase in 40 overs the home side weren’t too worried about their run rate, being told in the dressing room to be patient with the bat and put away the loose balls.
Unfortunately McGrath’s day got worse, falling in the first over giving the Cats a 1/0 start to end the first over.
This fall of wicket brought the relatively unknown entity of Dan Hughes to the crease to pair-up with opening batsman Adnan Malik.
Malik and Hughes were able to patiently see the ball through to the keeper with no urgency of scoring runs, despite the apparent confidence growing from the Tigers’ new ball bowling attack, putting on a 32 run partnership.
Malik fell to a low bouncing LBW for 22, just before the tea break.
Coming in with just 41 runs to win after the break, Hughes and Murray Urquhart (seven not out) stepped on the gas to polish off the Tigers with relative ease.
Hughes topped scored for the match with a patient 36 not out, hitting the winning runs out to long-on with a walk down the pitch to one of Cobram's young spinners.
The win sees Finley comfortably sitting second on the ladder, with the Cats heading into round five with confidence.
Finley will host sixth placed Tocumwal on Saturday, November 16.
The Cats’ Division Two side travelled to Katamatite for a Sunday fixture over the weekend, knocking the ball to the rope in their run chase to win with two wickets in hand and 10 overs to spare.
The Cats won the toss electing to send Katamatite out to bat, going with an eight-man bowling attack.
Fortunately the move paid off as all eight players taking at least one wicket each, rolling through the home side for 121 runs in 31 overs.
The main damage came from Liam Rafferty (2/28 off four) and Harrison King (2/12 off 1.3).
In-form batsman Russell Anderson punched away 40 runs with almost half of them coming in from of boundaries.
A batting collapse from Rafferty and King, who both fell for a duck, was stabilised by Anthony King who notched 25 to steer the Cats back on track.
After losing Anthony and Anderson, Cameron Lawler (19 not out) and Matthew Peacock (nine not out) were able to tough out the Tigers bowling attack to finishing off the run chase with 10 overs remaining.
The win sees the Cats sitting in the top four, setting up an intriguing clash against fifth placed Cobram-Yarroweyah United in round five.
Finley’s Division Two will travel to Cobram to face off against CYU on Saturday, November 16.