Cavs’ quick takes seven on first day

GOOD START: A file picture of Ballina Bears batsman Ben Carruthers, who scored an unbeaten half century against Murwillumbah on the opening day of Far North Coast LJ Hooker League cricket.
GOOD START: A file picture of Ballina Bears batsman Ben Carruthers, who scored an unbeaten half century against Murwillumbah on the opening day of Far North Coast LJ Hooker League cricket.

SEVEN wickets for Casino Cavaliers fast bowler Wade Sweeney was the individual highlight on the opening day of Far North Coast LJ Hooker League cricket.

Sweeney, one of the leading new-ball bowlers in the competition, claimed 7-46 from 22 overs against Alstonville at Hill Park Oval, Wollongbar, on Saturday.

But the match is evenly poised, with the Cavaliers to resume at 2-23 in reply to the home team's competitive totalof 196.

Alstonville opening batsmen Mitchell Wilson (43) and Kristiaan Ezzy (38) gave their team a good start before Liam Smith (34), batting at No 3,continued the good work.

But Sweeney removed Wilson and Smith then made life tough for the middle-order, including the key scalp of Greg Potter, leg-before without scoring.

New recruit Jason Caught from Lismore Workers claimed two Cavaliers wickets before stumps but Trent Bennett (14 not out) is still there.

Bennett, a Casino junior, has returned to the Cavaliers after several seasons with Pottsville.

Marist Brothers (8-96) took the hon-ours on a frenetic day against defending premiers Cudgen (80) when 18 wickets fell at Oakes Oval, Lismore.

Young leg-spinner Daniel Hamshaw, making his Hooker League debut, took 5-19 from five overs including the wicket of the dangerous Craig Wilson (25).

"The Cudgen bloke took to him like we thought he would, hit him for a six and a four, but Daniel kept his head and got him out," Brothers captain Luke Collings said.

"He sneaked through the defence of a couple of guys who played on, getting through them a bit quicker than they thought."

Pat Martin (28) guided Brothers to first-innings points before being run out and Jake Muscat (19 not out) added some handy runs after earlier taking two top-order wickets.

Collings said the pitch had a bit of life but, like Cudgen, he would have batted first had he won the toss.

"There was a bit of bounce and it was a tricky one to get first up but you wouldn't have thought 18 wickets would fall in the day," he said.

While happy with his team's position, Collings said he was bit disappointed in the run chase, with a number of poor shots among the dismissals.

On the Tweed, Ballina Bears and Tintenbar-East Ballina look set for at least first-innings points with every prospect of pushing on for outright wins.

Bears are 1-104 after bowling out Terranora for 134 at Bilambil Oval.

Opening bowler Ben Collins took 5-35 and his English countryman James Thorpe claimed 2-36.

Dylan Sloane (49) top-scored for Terranora.

Ben Carruthers (50) and Thorpe (35) will resume the run chase for Bears on Saturday.

Like Bears, the 'Bar bowled first after winning the toss and although they encountered slightly stiffer opposition they too are in a strong position.

Murwillumbah made 143 and Tintenbar in reply are 2-73.

All-rounder Brett Crawford took 4-28 and leg-spinner Jake Nind 3-20 in his first game for his new club.

Ian Rowling (46) top-scored for Murwillumbah.

Mitchell Saxby (33 not out) started the season in good form when Tintenbar batted.

In the other game, new recruit Andrew Lindsay (63) and Adam Fisher (40) starred with the bat as Lennox Head made 178 against Pottsville (3-40) at Seabreeze Oval, Pottsville.

The pair shared a 96-run partnership for the seventh wicket.

Tobyn Burvill, playing for Lennox after Byron Bay was unable to field a team this season, scored 26 and Adam Armistead took two wickets late in the day.

Opening bowlers Ryan McCloy and Nathan Wilson each took three wickets for Pottsville.



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