Leagues Panthers are planing on a run of strong batting partnerships as they prepare for their first grade match against Exies Club at the Exies Sport Ground on Saturday.
The Panthers who are fifth on the GDCA first grade ladder beat Hanwood, the number four team, at Hanwood Oval last weekend.
Now the Panthers are hoping to pounce into fourth place if they defeat the number two side, the Exies Club.
At Hanwood the Panthers batted first and were seven out for 138 at the end of the first innings.
Opening batsmen Matt Kennan hit 17 runs before having his wickets knocked over out by Exies Club player Todd Argus.
Panthers number two Ryan Greenaway took 24 runs hitting a single four before being caught out by Exies Club player Ryan McWhirter off a ball from Charlie Cunial.
Meanwhile, Panthers’ number six batsman Connor Matheson hit 41 including three fours and was undefeated throughout the innings.
“Connor dug us out of a whole at the end of the innings on Saturday through the way he composed himself,”said Panthers player James Binks.
“The outfield is always pretty slow at Hanwood Oval, Connor batted better than any-one I have seen for a while.
“The pitch however, was that perfect mix of ground cover and was hard thanks to keeper Jamie Whitworth,” Binks said.
According to Binks scheduling difficulties with the Panthers did see the team relying on some ring-ins against Hanwood, with the line up for Saturday’s game also looking to source some outside talent.
However, Binks insists that against Hanwood the ring-in team’s batsmen worked well together and were cool under pressure.
In the second innings Hanwood were balled out for 96.
Mr Binks himself took out four wickets, knocking over three all by himself.
“We’ve got a really strong top order with our batsmen,” Binks said.
“If we can take it away with our partnerships again we can make it (against Exies Club).”
Binks said Exies Club bowler Mark Tucker will be a big threat facing the Panthers on the weekend.
“They have all-round capabilities and a few of the best batters in the competition,” Binks said.
“Their good openers are Travers Pickmere and Phil Burge, we have got to keep and eye on them.
Round 16 will kick off 1pm Saturday at Exies Sport Club.
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