Plenty Valley’s inconsistent form with the bat has continued, with the Bats dropping their final round Victorian Sub-District Cricket Association north-west match to Altona.
Looking to seal a finals spot, the Bats were left to rue some poor batting against a side whose finals hopes were already over.
Bats skipper James Dickinson said the poor standard was something they’ve seen too much of this season.
“It’s been an inconsistent season and it showed on Saturday,” he said.
“Daniel Heatley batted for most of the innings, but we lost consistent wickets and couldn’t get any partnerships going.”
The Bats were bowled out for 147 in the final over of their innings.
Heatley, the Bats best batsman this season, top scored with 51, but only one other player passed 20.
The Bats started well with the ball and Simon Black took three quick wickets to have Altona in trouble at 3-25.
Altona settled and was patient in the chase, finishing 8-148, hitting the winning runs with 11 balls remaining.
Dickinson said Altona was able to build partnerships to get it over the line.
Black was the pick of the bowlers taking 3-35.
Dickinson said it was a disappointing performance with a finals spot on the line.
Despite the loss, the Bats sealed a finals berth when other results went their way.
“We would have liked a bit more momentum, but it is what it is,” he said.
“Hopefully we can get on a roll. We’ve got a lot of older guys who have played in a lot of finals.
“Hopefully we can handle the finals pressure.”
The Bats slipped from fifth to sixth and now face minor premiers Williamstown in a two-day match this weekend in the first week of finals.
The two teams haven’t faced each other this season as their only match was a wash-out.
Dickinson said getting wickets early would be vital.
“They’ve got a few key bats that have scored a lot of runs quickly,” he said.
“We’ll back our bowlers in do to the job.
“We’ll probably talk a bit about our batting and how we go about things. Hopefully it all comes together next week.”
Melton hosts Yarraville and Ivanhoe and Kew face off in the other first week final.
In Victorian Women’s Premier Cricket, the Bats suffered a big loss to Box Hill on Sunday.
Sent in, the Bats struggled to 139, and were bowled out with 10 balls remaining. Rhiann O’Donnell top scored with 66, but had little support.
Box Hill had no trouble making the runs, reaching 3-141 with nearly 15 overs to spare. Opener Anna Lanning top scored with 69 not out.
Tayla Vlaeminck took two wickets for the Bats.
The Bats sit fifth with one round remaining.
The Bats second side remains on track for a finals berth after defeating Box Hill. The Bats made 177, with Alissa Sharp top scoring with 55.
Box Hill fell 22 runs short, bowled out for 155 with nearly 10 overs remaining.
Both women’s teams play Dandenong in the final round.