Mass washouts in the Victorian Premier Cricket on Saturday have worked in the favour of Footscray.
The Bulldogs managed to pull off a rare inside-a-day win over Melbourne to bank a crucial six points, while Saturday’s rain caused interruptions to the second day’s play at all grounds and forced seven of the nine games to be finished without a result.
While most of the sides in the top six have to settle for draws, the Bulldogs quick work on day one proved beneficial as they jumped up to third on the ladder after starting the weekend in sixth.
“It just makes last week’s performance even more pleasing now, given the circumstances and the other results in the competition,”
Bulldogs captain Dylan Kight said. “There were only two results from last week that ended up going through.
“Dandenong beat Greenvale last week, so us and Dandenong get six points and everyone else in the competition besides Melbourne and Greenvale get two.
“It puts us up to third and now it’s [a finals double chance] 100 per cent in our court.” It was a victory that also came at a significant cost for Footscray.
The Bulldogs will be without new ball operator Jake Reed for the rest of this season and well into next summer.
Reed suffered a knee injury on day one and scans during the week confirmed an ACL tear.
It is a shocking blow for a player who is at the peak of his powers as a fast bowler.
“We’re all shattered for him,” Kight said. “It’s the highs and lows of cricket.
“He’s been a professional cricketer for a good half a dozen years now. He was in the Hobart Hurricanes squad for the past month, travelling with them, and just didn’t get the nod.
“He came back to us on the Friday night, plays on the Saturday and does his knee.
“It’s a sliding doors moment and you always think ‘what if’, but he doesn’t complain, he won’t sook, he’ll go and have the surgery, do his rehab, he’s a professional, he’ll be fine.”
Young fast bowlers Jonah Koch and Jordan Buckingham stepped up for Footscray.
Koch finished with 5-32, while Buckingham took 4-34.
The other highlight was a 70 from Travis Dean. Dean is producing the goods again for the Bulldogs this season with 438 runs at 43.8 so far.
Footscray has a crucial road trip to Ringwood for a Saturday-Sunday game this weekend.
The Bulldogs can strengthen their spot among the top eight. “It’s one of those double points games,” Kight said.
“If we can go there and play good cricket and come away with six points, that will put a big dint in Ringwood’s chances and put us a couple of games inside the eight.”