Stingers stung as Bandits continue streak of success

The Owaka Bandits continued their impressive run in the South Otago 40-over competition with a nine-run win over the Valley Stingers on Saturday.

Owaka, asked to bat, recorded a competitive 190 for five.

A spicy opening spell from Ash Sharma and Marc Phillips kept the runs down for the opening eight overs.

Chris Moffitt then bowled eight overs on the trot and took three well-deserved wickets, including opener Jeremy Gray (40).

At the 30-over drinks break, the Bandits were on 101 for four with captain Quentin Gare and Raiden Pennicott at the crease.

These two added nearly 40 runs before Pennicott was run out in bizarre fashion, and Gare started to accelerate his scoring.

With four overs remaining, the Bandits were on 144 when Gare showed his power game, belting 44 runs from the final four overs for a potentially defendable total.

Gare finished unbeaten on 73, his first half-century this season.

In reply, Valley’s chase went down to the final over, but it could not get over the line.

Valley lost two early wickets, including the key wicket of skipper Lachie Johnston with the score at 23 for two.

Michael Johnston and Luis Smales added 82 for the third wicket before Smales was run out for 23, the match in the balance.

With 10 overs remaining, Valley needed 72 runs with experienced batters Johnston and Bevan McCall at the crease.

Johnston was caught on the boundary by CP Singh for a fantastic innings of 92 runs off 94 balls, and the pressure mounted on Valley, which needed 20 off the final over.

Phillips hit a huge six off the second ball of the over to give his side a sniff but could not keep himself on strike, and Valley finished on 180 for eight.

Gare continued his fine day with two for 28 off eight overs.

The Kai Kings thumped the Waihola Swans by eight wickets in Milton.

Waihola elected to bat and was dismissed for 107 in the 30th over.

Greg Webber strove to give the Swans as many runs as possible through the middle of the innings with a nice 48 off 68 balls before being run out by Orry Young.

A Brad Frost cameo (27) at the latter stage of the innings added some much-needed runs, but the Swans lost their last five wickets for just five runs.

William Casey returned the best figures for the Kings with four for 13 off 4.3 overs.

In reply, it took the Kings 23.2 overs to chase the total down for the loss of just two wickets.

Opening batter Blair Benington carried his bat with an unbeaten 30, Young made 29, and Kings skipper Mark Shepherd scored 30 not out.

On his return to the South Otago competition, Eric Harris ended the match with figures of two for 18 off five overs.

 - Francis Parker 


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