FINAL MISS: Cudgen batsman Heath Wilson plays and misses during the LJ Hooker final against Tintenbar-East Ballina.
FINAL MISS: Cudgen batsman Heath Wilson plays and misses during the LJ Hooker final against Tintenbar-East Ballina. Blainey Woodham

Under Pressure: Wilson century sets up Cudgen win

A CENTURY to middle-order batsman Craig Wilson was enough to get Cudgen home against Tintenbar-East Ballina in the LJ Hooker League cricket final at Reg Dalton Oval, Kingscliff yesterday.

Chasing 252 and with his side struggling at 5-95, Wilson walked onto the pitch under plenty of pressure.

He combined with experienced batsman Doug Potter for a 115-run partnership as Cudgen stormed home for a two-wicket win.

It's the first premiership Cudgen has won since entering the competition in 2007-2008.

"It's an awesome feeling and we couldn't be happier," Cudgen captain Terry Wilson said.

"We've been fortunate to play in the semi-finals every year since coming in.

"It's a great competition and we're lucky to be a part of it."

Cudgen won the toss and the decision to send 'The Bar into bat almost backfired.

Captain Luke Shay (40) and middle-order batsman Nathan Hoey (48) were the standouts as the Ballina side reached 251.

Damien King took three wickets with Chris Moase, James Julius and Terry Wilson grabbing a pair each.

"The pitch wasn't the best and we knew the wicket would get better with time," Wilson said.

"All year we've struggled with the chase and a few heads went down when we were 5-95. We were just lucky to get that one big score and that was the difference in the end."

Tintenbar-East Ballina bowler Abe Crawford was strong again and took three wickets after his hat-trick in the semi-final helped them seal a spot in the decider.

Veteran bowler Mark Newstead also took three wickets and all-rounder Brett Crawford got through plenty of overs.

"They were really unlucky in the end and they will be a top side in the years to come," Wilson said.

"Our club is in a really good place at the moment and we'll look to build on this and keep brining jun- iors through."

Scoreboard, see page 40.



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