Grammars and Waves on final track
CRICKET: Past Grammars and Across The Waves are on track to meet in the Whale Cities Challenge grand final for the second year in a row after each making it two wins from as many matches on Saturday.
After the wash-out of the previous round, both achieved their second bonus-point victories at Salter Oval with reigning champion Grammars beating a much depleted Country/Wests by 116 runs and Waves thrashing a 10-man Cavaliers by eight wickets.
In Maryborough, Australs, who were beaten by Grammars by nine wickets first-up, were declared winners against Norths on a slightly superior run rate when the match was halted eight overs early due to bad light.
But Brothers and Bushrangers' hopes of a grand final berth were set back when their scheduled clash in Hervey Bay was abandoned at 10am on Saturday with ground staff ruling the pitch unplayable after overnight and morning rain.
Grammars racked up 7-254 from their 40 overs with Wide Bay representative opener Sam Chew compiling 77 at a run a ball and No. 3 Paul Sanders plundering 100 neat from just 78 deliveries.
Country could manage only 138 in reply with spinner Luke Beatty the chief destroyer with 4-40 after opener Matt Nowitzke had made the early in-roads, claiming 3-23.
Cavaliers No. 3 Ed Wyvill notched an unbeaten 69 from just 72 balls, but only two team-mates posted double-figures as they were routed for 124 with left-arm paceman Mitchell Waters doing the bulk of the damage with 3-10.
Waves lost two early wickets in reply but from there, they charged past their target in 17 overs with Trent Prossliner completing a fine double in his comeback match with a blazing unbeaten 55 after spearheading the attack with 2-23.
Australian schools 15 years representative Matt Fulton also hit out for a rapid-fire unconquered 54.
Norths were teetering at 9-136, chasing Australs' 9-173.
Paul Jagger and Lachlan Donovan each bagged three wickets for Norths, but captain Michael Ryan played a lone hand with the bat with 69.
Past Grammars 7-254 (Paul Sanders 100, Sam Chew 77, Scott Irwin 5-0-22-2, John Lowe 8-0-40-2) d Country Wests 138 (Damien Shield 44, Steven Nichols 43, Luke Beatty 7.4-3-40-4, Matt Nowitzke 5-0-23-3, Russell Hotchin 6-0-28-2)
ATW 2-127 (Trent Prossliner 55no, Matt Fulton 54no) d Cavaliers 124 (Ed Wyvill 69no, Mitchell Waters 5-1-10-3, Trent Prossliner 8-2-23-2).
Australs 9-173 (Nathan Allen 41) d Norths 9-136 (Michael Ryan 69, Daniel Donnini 4-40).