Umpire's take is the final word
What better man to assess the Bundaberg competition at its halfway point than umpire Mike Trost.
Perched in prime position each week, Trost has cast a wise eye on the field and has offered his view on the season so far.
Brothers United continue to be the team to beat in the women’s top league.
With their full-strength side, according to Trost, they will be hard to stop.
“Without pitcher Peta Gibbs they were brought back to the pack, but with her return they are my pick to take it out in the New Year,” he said.
Mike Shanhun’s Moray Eels have treated United with disdain this year, shrugging off the reputation of the top side to give them more than a scare so far.
Trost predicts that their batting, however, will only take them so far, and without a quality pitcher they will struggle in 2010.
“They will need to rely on strategy in the field and their batting to get them out of trouble, and that doesn’t always work,” he said.
With a full-strength team Souths Sluggers have the ability to go all the way, and are Trost’s pick to face United in the final.
But they’ve shown that without their stars they are a shell of their former selves.
“Gemma Bush and Nadia Dittman are the basis of their team. Without either of them they lose their structure and have recorded some ordinary results as a consequence,” Trost said.
Wests Panthers inconsistency in the field is the major reason they sit at the bottom of the table.
“They seem to lose the plot in patches and give away too many runs. They can be contenders but need to play at a more level standard,” he said.
The men’s competition sits tentatively heading into the break.
Across The Waves head the ladder courtesy of some forfeits and handy early wins.
“Consistency pays off; they know they’ll have their full contingent and are stocked in the pitching department. I think they are the team to beat,” Trost said.
Wests Lynx are a dedicated side that are challenging to topple Waves.
“They have some good players travelling to play each week and deserve to be in second spot,” he said.
Sluggers have suffered by not having players available week in, week out. They sit in third spot, equal with Wests Sabertoothed, but the two sides enter the break in contrasting form.
Sluggers are sliding while Sabers are forever improving.
“When I first umpired them they seemed to be just there for the beer after their loss. But they started winning and picked up a quick pitcher to put them in the hunt,” Trost said.
“But without a quality catcher to control the game I don’t think they can win it.”
United 8 and 7 have suffered in the same vein as Sluggers.
Regular full line-ups would see them mixing it at the top, but forfeits and under-strength showings have set them back.