Rivergum is through to a seventh straight North Metro Cricket Association Jika Shield grand final.

The Kookas showed a lot of spirit on day one of their semi-final against long time rival North Brunswick-Rosebank, setting themselves up for a fine victory.

The Kookas and the Rosellas have played off in the past five grand finals.

Kookas captain-coach Gary Bell said the first day served up some of the toughest conditions they had played in.

The Kookas lost the toss and had to field.

Bell said the players could have quite easily dropped their heads, but they stuck to the task at hand.

“It was pretty hot,” he said. “There was the heat, the humidity and the heat coming off the ground. We all went home and had baths. There was no complaining at all … in that situation you can lose your temper a lot quicker. It was a super effort.”

North Brunswick/Rosebank made 9-193 from its overs, a total Bell was happy to chase.

By contrast, the next day was overcast, making fielding conditions much more pleasant.

But the Kookas got the job done.

It was a couple of their best-performed players who rose to the occasion with the bat, as they finished 1-194 with nearly 20 overs remaining.

Alex Jesensek, who made a century in the final round, finished 82 not out, while Matt Kiely made 52.

Bell said it was a good all-round performance.

“Matt is one of the best opening batsmen in the competition,” he said.

“And AJ is in good form – it was good for them to be among the runs.”

The Kookas have the weekend off and will play with North Brunswick/Rosebank or Preston Baseballers in the grand final.

Bell said the continued performances of the team year in and year out were down to hard work

“It’s through hard work and not luck,” he said. “We’re not the most gifted side, but we have a lot of discipline.

“We appreciate the fact we have made that many grand finals. They get harder and harder to make – and harder to win, as we saw last year.”

The Kookas’ first XI isn’t the club’s only team through to a grand final, with its second XI looking to win back-to-back premierships this weekend.

Bell said the senior players would get down and support the side as it goes for premiership glory.