Gladstone Park remains on track for another finals appearance in the North West Metropolitan Cricket Association’s George Luscombe Shield.

The Burras sit fourth with one round remaining before the Christmas break and have shown signs they can match it with anyone.

President Paul Xuereb said their form with the bat had been promising so far this season.

“It’s been pretty good from our batting end,” he said.

“We’ve got a couple of guys, Matt Nyhus and Suminda Sampath Yagamuni  Mendis, who have made between 320 and 350 runs so far.

“We’ve been competitive in every game.”

While the batting has been strong, Xuereb said the new-look bowling attack was taking time to gel.

“Our opening bowler [Jaydan Moore] from last season hasn’t played, but we’re hoping he’ll play soon,” Xuereb said.

“Former captain-coach Andrew Shanahan is only playing a couple of games here and there, while Ashan DeSilva, who won the competition’s bowling, hasn’t started too well.

“He’s starting to hit his straps now. We’re hoping the bowling line-up will click soon.”

The Burras had to settle for a second draw in three rounds, after all NWMCA matches were cancelled at the weekend because of rain.

The Burras were playing Burnside Springs, which is fifth on the ladder.

Burnside Springs made 325 on day one of the match.

Xuereb said coming away with three points was better than nothing.

He said the side the Burras had for that match was one of, if not the, youngest first XI side they’ve ever fielded.

“It was a pretty good score, but we were confident we could chase it down,” he said.

“Any time you are chasing 320, you’re happy to take some points. A win would have put a bigger gap between us and them.”

The Burras sit fourth, a game clear of Burnside Springs and equal with third-placed Pascoe Vale Central. The Burras now face sixth-placed Northern Lions in two successive matches, one either side of the Christmas break.

Two wins would put the Burras in a good spot heading into the second half of the season.

They’ll have to do it without Andrew Gavaghan, who has moved to New Zealand.

Captain coach John Bubis is expected to miss this weekend’s match with a broken finger,
but Xuereb is hopeful he’ll be back after Christmas.

Xuereb said they were happy with where things were placed at this point of the season, considering they see this year as a transition period.


Tara Murray