It was an excellent bowling display from perennial crowd favourites Dalkeith that saw them grand final victors on a muggy Saturday at Owen Payne Oval.
Winning the toss, skipper Jackson Hedges could barely get the words “we’ll have a bat please” out quick enough, but some tight early bowling saw Dalkeith at two for not many, having lost Jak Jeffery unluckily, and form batsman Dylan Franklin.
Brad McDougall carved a path for the side, swatting short pitched bowling with his trade mark cut shot, punishing anything slightly loose. He deserved fifty but fell just short. Regular wickets, including Obi Hussein whose persistent reminders to the captain that he’d been bowling well in the nets, fell for Dalkeith and they could eventually only manage 137.
Harry Holmes cleaned up the tail and Aussie were confident that the score was obtainable on a pretty good deck.
Bon Franklin, however, had other ideas. The competition’s most threatening bowler sorted out Aussie openers Tim Walsh and Stuart Barton, whilst his brother went straight through Jagdeep.
Toby Miles and Tom Prentice then put on fifty for the fifth wicket before the former was removed by McDougall.
Prentice hung around, but runs were hard to come by, especially when the wily Terrance Ryan was operating from the Northern End. Regular wickets fell whilst Mark Barton showed some resistance and experience that typified his long career.
The Aussie could only just manage triple figures and Dalkeith wrapped it up in the 38th over.
Back at the Canonbar, medals were awarded to the victorious team and were presented by Dalkeith legends Billy Webster and Russell Jeffery, which was a nice touch.
Season awards went to Connor McDonald bowling average and aggregate; Dylan Franklin batting average and aggregate also player of the season and Bree Henry the fielding award.
Cheers to everyone who contributed to the season: all players, Liam Wherritt for umpiring and Cameron Bourke and Tony Payne for their work on the pitch.
It was a strong season for NDCA and with the prospect of a pitch going in at Larkin, expect Nyngan cricket to be on the rise, as it’s proud history suggests it should. Watch this space.