Raining runs as Souths win another premiership
By ADRIAN MILLER
SOUTHS captain Richard Nind didn't want to win it this way and Casino Cavaliers captain Mal Hancock certainly didn't want to lose it like this.
But they had no control over the elements and Souths claimed the Far North Coast LJ Hooker (Ballina) League cricket trophy after the final day's play at Oakes Oval, Lismore, was washed out yesterday.
With Souths needing only a draw to take the title, they were in a commanding position at 5-300 after the first day on Saturday.
But Hancock was confident his side would have given the target a nudge ? if they had the chance.
"It is very disappointing to finish without the chance to have a go," he said.
"They were in a good position but we were confident of getting the runs, especially if our openers could get through the new ball."
Nind said that while his side was thrilled to take its third title in four seasons, they would have preferred the final to run its natural course.
"I'm ecstatic, it's three times out of four now," he said.
"They called us old buggers but we worked really hard after the semi-final and it paid off.
"I feel sorry for Casino.
"It would been good to try to bowl them out because I would have backed ourselves to defend the total."
Souths' total was built on the back of a brilliant century from Steve Fredericks, who compiled 109 not out from only 115 balls.
"That is one of the best hundreds I've seen ? he batted brilliantly," Nind said.
However, Fredericks wasn't the only one to star with the willow.
Nind scored 54, while Rex Parrish (69) shared a 145-run partnership with Fredericks which, along with a flurry after tea where they scored close to 120 runs in 20 overs, put Souths firmly in control of the match.
But it could have been different for Casino.
They dropped Anthony Nind in the first over of the match, Richard Nind twice and missed a straight-forward run out opportunity of Paul McLean.
"Anthony didn't go on to score a lot but it would have been good to get McLean in during the first over rather than six or seven later," Hancock said.
"Those chances were pretty important for us because we didn't get the early wickets we hoped for and if we did maybe we could have restricted them a bit more.
"But I'm proud of the way the team stuck with it all day.
"Mark Mison, Al Nowlan and Wade Sweeney bowled 20 overs each and they were charging in as hard at the end of the day as they were at the start."
Nind also paid tribute to the Casino attack, especially Al Nowlan, but warned Souths would be back ? and just as formidable ? next season.
"Look out for us again next season because we're all going around again and the talent we have we'll still put it to the comp," he said.
"It's absolutely fantastic and I'm really proud of the guys for the way they stuck at it all year."