Seabrook will be taking nothing for granted when it returns in a strong position for day two against Williamstown Congs in their Victorian Turf Cricket Association west A1 clash at JT Gray Reserve on Saturday.

Having posted 221, the Saints are in the box seat to win.

But reflection on last season’s grand final, when they put up 231 and had it chased down by Williamstown Imperials, is strong motivation for them to remain focused.

Saints skipper Leigh Edwards reminded the players that 220 on that ground is probably just over par.

“It’s a pretty quick ground with small boundaries,” he said. “But if we bowl well enough – we’ve got a pretty good five bowlers, four quicks and a handy medium pacer – we’ve got enough bowlers to get the job done.

“But as we saw last year, it is cricket and anything can happen, so we’ve got to be switched on to deliver with the ball.”

Seabrook was staring down the barrel early in its batting stint, losing two quick wickets to be 2-4.

The Saints endured a stop-start recovery to be 5-100, but were still considered to be behind the eight ball due to their history of lower-order collapses.

Mitch Grubb, the Saints’ new wicketkeeper-batsman from sub-district club Altona, was the only player to have success in the top order with 55.

“He’s a good recruit for us,” Edwards said.

Instead of fading out, Seabrook’s middle to lower order sparked the team.

Luke Rappazzo (25) and Dhaval Patel (40) got the innings back on track with a 40-run, sixth-wicket partnership.

Then came handy contributions from Callum Hands (19no) and Hitesh Bavarva (37), who put on 57 for the ninth wicket.

The late revival was a nice surprise for Edwards, who is hoping it will be a precursor to the rest of the season.

“It was good to see the bowlers really stood up with the bat today,” he said.

“It’s good to see some signs early in the year that they’re standing up and getting the job done.”

Seabrook was bowled out in the last over with four balls to spare.

 

Lance Jenkinson