COWARAMUP Cricket Club and Busselton All Stars both claimed their first championship titles when the Busselton-Margaret River Cricket Association held the 2020 grand finals of the annual 20-20 competition at Barnard Park on Saturday.
Cowaramup caused a major upset when they defeated reigning title-holders Vasse in the grand final of the B-Grade competition on the turf wicket.
Meanwhile, Busselton All Stars capped a memorable first year in the competition when they overcame Dunsborough in the C-Grade final on the western synthetic ground.
The showcase match, the A-Grade final which started at 3.30pm to capitalise on the big crowd, saw YOBS successfully defend their title from last year when they comfortably defeated St Marys in the grand final.
The Cowaramup Bulls started their B-Grade campaign in the best possible fashion when captain Thomas Coulson - unconventionally opening the attack with his off-spin - bowled key Vasse player Sam Shepherd, chopping on, with the very first ball of the match.
Better was to follow for the Bulls when fellow Vasse opener Shankar Madhusudan departed, also for a duck, caught at mid-on, later in the first over.
Vasse completely collapsed to 6-18, and it was left to Miles Darragh and the tail to restore some respectability before Vasse were dismissed for 69 in the 20th and final over.
Coulson (3-7) and medium-pacer Ben Shepherd (4-10) were the destroyers for Cowaramup.
Despite the low target the chase went down to the wire, with skipper Coulson (23 not out) completing an outstanding double for the game, to be there at the finish with Shepherd to win the game by five wickets with one over remaining for Cowaramup.
The C-Grade final, played on the western synthetic ground, saw Dunsborough claim the upper hand early when they raced away to 1-96 in the first 15 overs, with Bruce Siney (65 not out) and Chris Dudley (44) adding 86 for the second wicket in good time.
Tight bowling from left-arm paceman Jason Hills - captaining the All Stars - restricted Dunsborough to 4-136 from their 20 overs.
Jacob Cook (50) and Miles Armstrong (58) then shared a second-wicket century stand to put the All Stars in the box seat.
Dudley (3-13) gave Dunsborough a late chance of victory with a flurry of wickets in the late overs before the All Stars scraped across the line with two overs remaining.
The A-Grade playoff saw YOBS put on a clinical display to outpoint St Marys from the start.
Tight bowling from YOBS held the Saints top order in check, before some late hitting by Nick Ritchie (38 not out) saw Saints register three figures, finishing on 6-105 from their 20 overs.
YOBS openers Harvey Golding (40 off 36 balls) and Nayton Colombera (55 not out off 34 balls) blew the game away in the chase, adding 95 in breezy fashion before Golding threw his wicket away.
This gave skipper Haig Colombera the opportunity to partner his brother while the winning runs were scored, getting YOBS home by nine wickets with nearly eight overs to spare.
Man of the match trophies went to Nayton Colombera (A-Grade for YOBS), Thomas Coulson (B-Grade for Cowaramup) and Chris Dudley (C-Grade for Dunsborough).
The day proved a great success for the Busselton-Margaret River Cricket Association, with clubs sharing the work in the kitchen and the bar being well patronised on the afternoon.
Home and away fixtures for the Yates Shield resume in the Busselton-Margaret River competition this Saturday. YOBS will meet St Marys again at Barnard Park, while Dunsborough host Margaret River Hawks at the Dunsborough Playing Fields.
Warriors cement their place at the top
Lasts week's instalment of the Chicken Treat Margaret River Big Bash T20 Cricket Competition was another cracker of a week, with the Madness facing Sons of Pitches first up.
SOPs won the toss and bowled, with the first breakthrough coming off the 7th ball of the match.
A 31-run partnership followed to get Madness back on track before it was broken in the 6th over, 2 for 44.
A 25-run effort from Mark, three wickets from Brenno and 33 from Pete saw Madness post a total of 9/155.
Hot on the heels of their first win, Sons of Pitches where hoping to continue their spell of good luck but by the second over their first wicket was gone 1/10.
Nick (35/28) kept the SOPs on target until they lost their second wicket in the 5th , 2/26.
Things were looking good as Alan (27/24) joined Nick and they continued to make runs and both retiring but that was about it, SOPs ended their innings 9/126.
Chicken Treat Man of the Match went to Pete, a regular winner, 33/24, and 2/5 of 1.
Game Two saw the Bush Chooks bat first against the Finbats and were on target as half the team made double figures Al (15/12) CJ (28/24 no) Seb (21/14) Chooky (26/20 no) Cody (26/19 no).
The first wicket fell on the 4th over 1/27.
The 20th over saw Smitty being bowled and the innings ended on 5/165.
Fighting for second spot, Rohan (10/10), Blackie (25/21), Gibbo (26/17), Andy (20/22), Johnny (19/14) and Telstra (20/12), the batsmen all got starts.
The Finnys looked in the box seat at 1 for 77 at the halfway mark, but the runs started to dry up, (unlike the weather!) with some tight bowling from Man of the Match Chooky, (0 for 6 from 2 overs), the Chooks were home, Finbats finishing on 6/139.
Final game of the week had top team facing the bottom of the ladder dwellers, with the Warriors up against the Big Show.
After a slight confusion was sorted, the Big Show batted first.
They didn't get off to the best of starts as they were soon 4/38.
This definitely wasn't Big Show's day as they went quickly to 8/59, then all out for 80 runs in the 17th over.
Quick wickets were going to be key, and with the first wicket in the second over, the score was 1/9.
A few more wickets gave the Big Show a chance, but ultimately the Warriors showed why they are on top of the ladder, getting the runs in the 10th over. Chicken Treat Man of the Match went to Zac 25/22 and 2/8 of 2.
- Michael Earl