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Souths stay in finals race

Alstonville’s Andrew Larrecey takes a tumble after a delivery from Ballina’s Ben Collins in their LJ Hooker League match at Hill Park Oval, Wollongbar, on Saturday.
Alstonville’s Andrew Larrecey takes a tumble after a delivery from Ballina’s Ben Collins in their LJ Hooker League match at Hill Park Oval, Wollongbar, on Saturday. JAY CRONAN

SOUTHERN Districts took full advantage of the hapless Pottsville on a rain-affected track as they look to keep their LJ Hooker League cricket finals hopes alive.

After winning the toss, captain Richard Nind sent Pottsville in and had them out again in just 17 overs.

Nind didn’t even need to call upon his leg-spinning son Jake – who took 5-26 against Brothers last week – with the seamers running through the Pottsville batting line-up in slick fashion.

Seemingly safe, Souths top-order was rattled by Pottsville pacemen Nathan Wilson (4-27) and Sean Clark (3-54) who took the first seven wickets with less than 50 runs on the board.

But the team languishing last on the ladder showed why they were there, taking the foot off Souths throat and allowing the tail end to boost the score to 9-154.

Batting at 10, Nathan Rose was unbeaten with 40 valuable runs to go with his 3-10, while No 11 Craig Bateman remained on 18 – he also took 3-10 with the ball.

Pottsville’s relent should see Souths take full points when the match resumes next Saturday, keeping them in the race for fourth spot.

The final match to get underway between Murwillumbah and Brunswick-Byron had no implications on the finals race but produced one of the performances of the weekend.

After winning the toss and electing to bat, Murwillumbah were made to rue that decision with Ryan Du Chateau crashing through the batting order to take the first four wickets and finish with figures of 5-17.