Tucabia pull off last round miracle to make finals
CRICKET: Coming out of the Christmas break and sitting at the bottom of the GDSC Premier League without a win to their name, Tucabia-Copmanhurst Phil Lloyd Earthmoving was on a "hiding to nothing”, and Jaye Yardy knew it.
But the captain refused to give up.
It was the heart that he wanted to instil in his side, a team that was supposed to be playing second grade in the 2018/19 season.
Luckily for Yardy, the players around him followed, putting their bodies and hearts on the line each week.
On Saturday, it all came to fruition as the side pulled off a miracle outright result against Coutts Crossing to steal its way into the Premier League finals.
It was also a reward for Yardy's unabashed faith.
"It is a proud moment. You look around the field, everyone is giving 100 per cent,” he said.
"Cricket is all about taking wickets and scoring runs and that is what we have done.
"Our season doesn't stop now, but personally that is a big win for me as captain and a big win for the team.
"I definitely didn't think that was where we were going to be. Cricket is a funny game, and anything can happen.”
Coutts Crossing did all it could to stem Tucabia, with Noel O'Connell (39) playing a top class rear-guard knock in the first innings to help the side go from 5-41 overnight to 142 all out in the first innings.
"The nerves were definitely kicking in,” Yardy said. "I knew we had the ability to still score quick runs, I set the batting order that way. We probably scored quicker than I thought, so any nerves I had around Coutts staying in longer were alleviated pretty quickly.”
It was the efforts of all-rounder Tyson Blackadder (67* and 4 for 36 off 10) that would leave little doubt to the final result.
Blackadder smashed the Coutts attack to all parts, working in tandem with Bob McKenzie (36) to help the side to a total of 3-127 off 17 overs before Yardy declared.
"We put in a pretty attacking declaration,” Yardy said. "It gave Coutts the chance to get the runs. I knew they had the armoury there to do it, but as it turns out our bowlers held out and we got the result.”
Coutts Crossing struggled to match the required run rate of 6 an over from the outset and was bowled out for 84 with O'Connell, sporting a freshly dislocated finger, the last out.
While Blackadder put in a lionhearted effort with the ball, it was off-spinner Matt Summers (5 for 25 off 7.2) who did the most damage.
"Matt Summers is not our first-choice spinner in the side, but with Jordy Bultitude out he really stepped up for us,” Yardy said.
"He just kept it simple, fired them up in the right areas and to come away with a five-wicket-haul in that last innings was great. We needed someone to get wickets, he was our man.”
TUC-COP EARTHMOVING V COUTTS CROSSING
Venue: Lower Fisher Turf
Toss: Tucabia Copmanhurst
Umpires: Graeme Solomon, Jason Thompson
Tuc-Cop 1st Innings 176
Coutts Crossing 1st Innings
B Rankin c JS Blanch b Anderson 12
B Cotten c JS Blanch b Blackadder 22
B North c Sullivan b BR Blanch 1
M Elkerton b BR Blanch 1
H Woods b Pigg 23
A McLachlan b BR Blanch 0
MR McKee b Anderson 16
R Cotten b Blackadder 11
N O'Connell c Sullivan b Summers 39
A Bailey c McKenzie b Summers 0
D Ensby not out 5
Extras (b 2, lb 6, w 1, nb 3) 12
ALL-OUT for 142
FoW: 1-36(B Cotten) 2-36(B Rankin) 3-40(B North) 4-41(A McLachlan) 5-41(M Elkerton) 6-69(MR McKee) 7-87(R Cotten) 8-127(H Woods) 9-128(A Bailey) 10-142(N O'Connell)
Bowling: TJ Blackadder 15-2-47-2(1w), JR Anderson 9-5-17-2, BR Blanch 6-2-34-3(3nb), TR Sullivan 3-0-9-0, LC Pigg 7-1-18-1, M Summers 3.2-0-5-2, DW Moran 1-0-4-0
Tuc-Cop 2nd Innings
TJ Blackadder not out 67
DW Moran c Woods b R Cotten 16
BJ McKenzie b North 36
J Yardy run out (H Woods) 5
Extras (b 0, lb 1, w 0, nb 2) 3
THREE wickets for 127
FoW: 1-51(DW Moran) 2-105(BJ McKenzie) 3-127(J Yardy)
Bowling: R Cotten 5-0-41-1(2nb), A McLachlan 2-0-24-0, D Ensby 3-0-14-0, B North 3-0-19-1
Coutts Crossing 2nd Innings
B Rankin b Blackadder 2
M Elkerton lbw b Summers 4
B North b Pigg 16
R Cotten c McKenzie b Blackadder 4
MR McKee lbw b Blackadder 5
A McLachlan c Moran b Blackadder 21
H Woods not out 17
D Ensby c Yardy b Summers 0
A Bailey c Pigg b Summers 3
A Pearce b Summers 4
N O'Connell b Summers 1
Extras (b 2, lb 1, w 2, nb 2) 7
ALL-OUT for 84
FoW: 1-4(B Rankin) 2-21(B North) 3-28(R Cotten) 4-28(M Elkerton) 5-34(MR McKee) 6-65(D Ensby) 7-65(A McLachlan) 8-70(A Bailey) 9-82(A Pearce)
Bowling: TJ Blackadder 10-4-36-4, LC Pigg 4-1-11-1, M Summers 7.2-0-25-5(2nb), BR Blanch 2-0-9-0(2w)
TUCABIA-Copmanhurst Phil Lloyd Earthmoving won outright by 77 runs.