Leagues have won their second GDCA first grade one-day final in a row after seeing off first-placed Exies in the decider on Sunday afternoon.
After winning the toss and electing to bat Leagues were looking to make a good start with Logan Matheson and Ben Leach at the crease.
The loss of Matheson (9) early didn’t stop the flow of runs as Andrew Madden, and Leach kept the score ticking over.
However, after a 26-run stand, both Madden (21) and Leach (9) fell in quick succession the bowling of Jamie Winkler (2/27) to bring youngster Reece Matheson to the crease.
Along with Jimmy Binks, Matheson helped get his side moving in the right direction with a confidence-building partnership.
The pair were able to put on 44 before Binks (21) became Andrew Arnold’s second victim of the day before Tom Spry struck to remove Liam Greenaway (0) and Matheson fell to Arnold (3/32).
Captain Paul Plummer continued from where he left off on Saturday forming a partnership with Ryan Greenaway to see the score reach 133 before Greenaway (13) was dismissed by Spry (2/30).
Leagues were thrown a curve ball when opening bowler Satvir Chahal (4 retired hurt) was struck in the head by a Tom Spry bouncer and had to be taken to hospital.
Brett Hazelman (8*) and Plummer (32) were able to see out the remaining overs to set Exies 163 for victory off 40 overs.
The injury to Chahal meant the Panthers would be without their opening bowler and Plummer was proud of how his bowlers adapted to the challenge.
“Everyone put there hand up and bowled good lines and bowled tight and got the job done,” he said.
After Travers Pickmere and Exies captain Phil Burge put on an opening partnership of 12, Leagues were able to put Exies under serious pressure.
Pickmere (1) was caught off the bowling of Brett Hazelman (1/37) and was quickly followed by Jamie Winkler who was run out by Liam Greenaway.
Another two wickets fell in quick succession to see Exies struggling at 4/23 with the dismissals of Tom Spry and Burge.
Craig Burge (23) and Andrew Arnold (36) were the only Exies batsmen to get starts as the bowling of Leagues continued to take wickets at regular intervals.
When Connor Bock was the last wicket to fall, Leagues had wrapped up the one-day title with a 39-run victory.
Plummer was quick to point out Reece Matheson’s performance with the bat as a real standout.
“He got 40-odd and did really well and just showed how good he is,” he said.