Tintenbar-East Ballina batsman Mick Gabriel pulls during his innings of 74 against Eastern Districts at Oakes Oval, Lismore, on
Tintenbar-East Ballina batsman Mick Gabriel pulls during his innings of 74 against Eastern Districts at Oakes Oval, Lismore, on

Knight century saves Workers

By PAUL ATTEWELL.

WORKERS captain Michael Knight hit his first century in Far North Coast cricket to lead the way on a day of high scoring in the LJ Hooker League.

Knight made 128 of Workers' 216 after being sent in by Marist Brothers at Nesbitt Park, South Lismore, on Saturday on what he described as a docile track.

In other games:

Tintenbar-East Ballina piled on 9-283 against competition leaders Eastern Districts at Oakes Oval, Lismore.

Norths-Goonellabah RSL had their best day of the season with the bat, reaching 6-238 by stumps against Lennox Head at adjacent Heaps Oval, Lismore.

Alstonville lost 2-18 after bowling out Ballina Bears for 147 at Fripp Oval, Ballina.

Casino Cavaliers are in trouble at 3-10 in reply to Souths' 164 at Queen Elizabeth Park, Casino.

At Nesbitt Park, Knight went in with Workers at 3-36 and before long they were 4-41.

He shared important partnerships of 65 with Paul Ianna (23) and of 104 with Jeremy Cowin (21), who played a fine support role.

Cowin, 15, last week was selected in the North Coast Bradman Cup Under-16 team and on Saturday he was making his first-grade debut.

"Jeremy got in behind the line of the ball really well," Knight said.

The Workers captain found the boundary 10 times in his innings ? his second century after one in the Lower Clarence Cricket Association a few years ago.

Off-spinner Dominic Marsh was the best of the Marist Brothers bowlers, taking 4-63 from 25 overs, while young leg-spinner Michael Singh claimed 3-53 from 13 overs.

At Oakes Oval, Tintenbar-East Ballina have set Easts a huge target on a flat pitch.

Mick Gabriel (74) and Kent Shay (66) put on 114 for the third wicket, then watched Scott Hogden (49), Mark Newstead (25) and others capitalise.

Dropped catches

Easts spilt a couple of difficult chances early and will now have to bat very well next Saturday to give themselves any chance of even saving the game.

Pacemen Ian Gregory and Brett Ruttley each took three wickets.

At Heaps Oval, opening batsman Brad Walker (83) starred after the Hawks lost three early wickets.

He finally found support in former captain Nathan Bonamy (76) and together they added 97 runs for the fourth wicket.

Matt Grimson (45 not out), in his first season of first-grade, ensured Norths-Goonellabah finished the day well on top.

Opening bowler Mark Denmeade toiled hard in the heat for Lennox Head, finishing with 3-51 from 19 overs after bowling a marathon 12 overs in his first spell.

At Fripp Oval, young opener Brett Izzard (80) held the Ballina Bears innings together, very nearly carrying his bat.

Running out of partners, Izzard started to attack and was the last man out, having hit his first first-grade 50 and ensured his team had a target to defend.

While Izzard watched from the non-striker's end, Scott Petty (5-36) and Josh Murphy (3-39) ran through most of the Bears batting line-up.

Wicketkeeper Peter Weingarth held five catches.

Alstonville would have been happy restricting Bears to 147, but would not have been happy losing two wickets before stumps, setting up an interesting second day.

At Queen Elizabeth Park, Cavaliers captain Adam Shields would have felt the same way.

Shields won the toss and fielded, and the home team battled on well to bowl out Souths after they were 3-99 at one point.

Mark Mison was the pick of the Casino bowlers, taking 5-45 from 17 overs.

"It was the best he's bowled this season," Shields said.

Losing three wickets at the end of the day was a setback for the Cavaliers, but with Shields and Northern NSW Colts representative Sam Irvine still to bat, either team could still win without surprising.



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