LACHLAN’S Western Zone Inter-council campaign has gotten off to a shaky start, with the Valley’s derby headed to Macquarie for the 2016-17 season.
Played in Dubbo, the visiting Lachlan outfit - one that included Parkes’ Peter Yelland, Anthony Heraghty, Smiths Myles and Blake and Jacob Harvey – batted brilliantly to set a total of 4-267.
Proving they’re more than up to the task, Macquarie chased down the monumental total after a boundary from veteran wickletkeeper-batsman Jason Ryan in the final over ensured a thrilling opener to the inter-council season last Sunday.
The hosts entered the final over needing 10 runs with three wickets in hand, with the RSL-Colts star keeping a cool head against the highly-touted southerners.
In a true team effort Macquarie’s stars lifted, with Ryan’s penultimate-ball heroics completing a job that had been set up by the top order.
Jordan Moran (46) and Mitch Bower (45) both got starts, but it was Chris Russo (59) who top scored as the home side chased down Lachlan’s total of 268.
Russo played his early cricket in Dubbo but spent time in Canberra before returning this season and linking with Rugby.
“He batted well,” Macquarie skipper Mitch Bower said of Russo after the game.
“His style hasn’t changed since he left a few years ago. He’s an accumulator and he anchored our innings.
“We have some aggressive batsmen in our side but having a player like him in the squad now gives us someone to bat around and that helps because chasing targets hasn’t been our big strong point in recent seasons.
“But in saying that everyone had a job to do out there today and they did it, so I can’t ask for much more than that.”
While happy with the win, Bower concedes there are some areas the side can improve on ahead of their next match against Mitchell at Orange’s Wade Park on October 29.
“Ideally we wouldn’t have let them score 268 but Nick Berry batted well for his 90-odd and Jacob Harvey bombed a few late and that was the difference between them making 230 or 240 and eventually making 268,” Bower said.
“Our bowlers didn’t hit their spots at times but it’s our first weekend of cricket.”