West Augusta reach A grade cricket grand final

CLOSE: West Augusta strike bowler Mark Myers, who took 1/12, comes remarkably close to snaring another wicket in their clash against South Augusta at ETSA Oval on Saturday, March 11. PHOTO: Marco Balsamo.

CLOSE: West Augusta strike bowler Mark Myers, who took 1/12, comes remarkably close to snaring another wicket in their clash against South Augusta at ETSA Oval on Saturday, March 11. PHOTO: Marco Balsamo.

West Augusta have advanced to the Port Augusta A grade cricket grand final on the back of a hard-earned four-wicket victory against South Augusta in the elimination final.

Batting first, South finished their 50 overs at 9/180, and in reply, West showed all of their mettle to reach 5/181 with only four balls to spare.

The match was the complete opposite of the round 16 clash between these two sides and it meant South were the favourites despite losing to Quorn in the qualifying final on March 4.

But they looked anything but favourites from the first ball.

Greg Shirley showed promising signs and looked set to return his devastating mid-season form but he was dismissed for a rapid-fire 38.

His fellow opener Marcus Kerin couldn’t finish the season on a high either as he was dismissed for 10.

South’s ever-reliable all-rounder Todd Kernahan loomed as the potential match-winner for South but he lost his wicket for just 10, well below his late season average.

That wicket left South down three wickets sooner than expected and the middle order failed to fire.

Marcus Gill was the lone force of resistance for South as he started to swing the willow, putting the pressure back on West before being dismissed for 47.

Russell Coulthard was West’s best bowler for the day, taking 4/26 off 10 overs.

This result is the second-consecutive week West have kept their opposition to under 200 runs

West started their run chase in fine fashion with Nicholas Bailey hitting six fours on his way to a quick fire 34 after Aaron Vater trapped him LBW.

Chris Shiel kept the runs flowing, smashing one six and three fours on his way to a devastating 47 which helped West get a stable footing.

Aaron Vater was the man who dismissed Shiel, clean bowling him and looking like the lone figure that could wrestle the game back South’s way.

West Captain Jason McInerney and stalwart Mark Benbow came in with West five wickets down, but showed their cool to get West over the line.

McInerney and Benbow finished on 20 and 56 not out respectively, with Benbow hitting several boundaries in an ominous display of form.

West will face Quorn in the A grade grand final at ETSA Oval, 12.30pm Saturday March 18.

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