'Bar skipper rides his luck
TINTENBAR-East Ballina allrounder and captain Luke Shay is in red-hot form with the bat but he puts his recent feast of runs down to luck.
Shay has compiled two fifties and one hundred in his last five Far North Coast Cricket LJ Hooker League innings.
This includes a fine 102 last Saturday in his side's current two-day match against Alstonville at Kingsford Smith South, Ballina.
"I don't know what it is, it's probably just a bit of luck," he said.
Shay came to the crease with his side three wickets down and 70 runs on the board.
He departed with the score up around the 230-mark.
"That was my first (Hooker League) century so the boys gave me a good cheer," Shay said.
"It was pretty tiring because it was a slow outfield so I had to run a lot of ones and twos."
The 'Bar reached 9-250 declared from 72 overs and Alstonville is 1-32 in reply.
Shay's team is locked in a battle with Cudgen for the last of the four semi-final spots in the final round of the Hooker League.
Cudgen is in trouble in their match against Pottsville at Seabreeze after they were bowled out for 132 and the hosts are 3-71 in reply.
An outright victory will guarantee the 'Bar a spot in the semi-finals.
"The pitch was pretty good to bat on last Saturday and if it's the same, it will be hard to bowl them out twice," Shay said.
The top-of-the-table Marist Brothers v Ballina match at Oakes Oval, Lismore is evenly poised after the hosts compiled 220 last Saturday.
"We're really happy with that total and we spoke about lifting our intensity for these big end-of-season matches before play started," Brothers paceman Jeremy Cowin said.
The Casino Cavaliers were also impressive against Byron Bay at Queen Elizabeth Park, Casino.
The hosts chased down the Bay's paltry 87 in just 22 overs and instantly sent in Byron Bay after achieving their target.
The Bay is 2-35 in its second innings. Michael Wood (4-9), Wade Sweeney (3-22) and Al Nowlan (2-9) led an in-form Cavaliers attack in the first innings.
"Everybody's doing a good job with the ball at the right time of the season," captain Nowlan said.
"With the recent rain, I bit the bullet and sent them in on a good deck and it came off for us."
And Workers Goonellabah had Terranora 6-85 before Michael Gardner (77) helped the hosts score a competitive 9-232 declared at Bilambil. Workers Goonellabah is 1-29 in reply.
"It was frustrating for us to watch after the position we had them in but he (Gardner) batted quite well and didn't give any chances," Workers Goonellabah batsman Michael Knight said.
Ballina Bears 55, Marist Brothers 43, Casino Cavaliers 41, Cudgen 38, Tintenbar-East Ballina 38, Alstonville 26, Byron Bay 26, Pottsville 24, Terranora 20, Workers Goonellabah 17.