Riddell’s season and grand final hopes have come to an end at the hands of an experienced St Anthonys outfit in Gisborne and District Cricket Association Johnstone Shield District Firsts.
The Bombers, who finished the regular season in third spot, were hoping to cause an upset by knocking off second-placed
However, while the Bombers had periods of dominance, they eventually fell well short.
Bombers’ president and first XI player David King said that in the end the Saints’ experience was telling.
“We had four under-19s and five players under-20,” he said.
“They have a lot of older guys and have a higher average age.
“Those old heads showed through, especially with the batting.”
The Bombers got off to an ideal start, having the Saints in trouble at 6-84. But that was as good as it got for the Bombers, with St Anthonys eventually making 235.
“Things didn’t go to plan,” King said. “Their sixth-wicket partnership put on 100 runs and that hurt us.
“We dropped a couple of catches in there – and, as usual, catches win matches.”
Heath Brown, Ben Radford and Daniel Fisk took three wickets each for the Bombers.
King thought the Bombers were in with a chance, even though they had struggled to post scores in excess of 200 this season.
As in their bowling, the Bombers’ batting effort started well before falling away.
They were bowled out for 143.
“Ben Radford opened the batting for the first time and put on 50,” King said.
“At 2-58, we were tracking in the right direction, but the wheels fell off.
“We couldn’t get that partnership. Harry Fisher made 46 coming in at seven, but no one could stick around with him.”
King said that despite missing out on a grand final, the season was one of success. He said that after losing seven first XI players and dropping a grade in the off season, they didn’t know what to expect.
“Finals was the aim at the end of the day,” he said. “We finished where we expected to be.
“On our day, we were thereabouts. Hopefully, the young guys will stick around for next season.”
The Bombers’ second XI are through to the grand final after upsetting minor premier Ashfield.
In the Johnstone shield, the Saints will face Bacchus Marsh in the grand final after the Bulls upset minor premier Rupertswood.
The Bulls set the win up on day one when they bowled Rupo out for 167. Bert Van Den Heuvel top-scored with 54.
Rupertswood made sure the Bulls worked for their win, but couldn’t stop them reaching 8-173.
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