AFTER breezing through the semi-final against Emerald Brothers, the Emerald Magpies ran into some stiff opposition against Clermont in the under-13 Central Highlands junior cricket grand final at the weekend.
Set a sizeable 6-84 run target by Clermont, Emerald Brothers opening batsman Mark Cupper made a solid dent with 40 runs etched to his name before he was forced to retire on 40 runs.
Cupper’s top-score of the day came after just 30 balls and included three boundaries and four which cleared the field all together for six.
Clermont’s David Boyes made a solid impression in the first innings prior to being bowled by Jacob Weatherley for 18.
Cupper continued to make in-roads in the final, this time with the ball, finishing with conservative figures of 0-3 from four overs, two of which were maiden overs.
Magpies’ coach Russell Bowyer said the Clermont’s run-rate would not have been as low as it was without the outstanding support from all players in the field.
“We bowled and fielded pretty well and had them down to a fairly achievable total,” Bowyer said.
While they may have been making all the runs with the bat it was Magpies second highest run-scorer Kallum Dendle who was hard at work behind the scenes for most of the season.
Every week the wicket-keeper batsman travelled from Springsure for training and games and had proven a handy asset for the Emerald outfit.
Dendle made 16 runs with the bat and took 1-8 with the ball after being relieved from his keeping duties.
“He’s a good little player, pretty committed,” coach Bowyer said.
The Magpies victory came on the back of a 40-run thumping of inter-town rivals Emerald Brothers in the semi-final, and followed a remarkable rise from third position at the end of the regular season to competition premiers.
Bowyer who was a Magpies junior coach for the past two seasons said he would relish the chance to take up the coach’s clipboard again next season should the opportunity arise.
“It’s great to see the kids progress and develop the skills in their game,” he said.
Clermont was unavailable for comment.
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