Premier Grade Cricket Review
Round 2 Bankstown v North Sydney
Day 1, 30th September 2017
by Mick Stephenson
The Bankstown Sports Club Bulldogs are in a commanding position at Memorial Oval in the two-day fixture against North Sydney. Daniel Solway followed his glorious century last week with a stunning 168 not out against the Bears. Officials were sent scrambling through the record books in an attempt to find a better start to the season by a Bulldogs batsman. It proved to be a fruitless search as Daniel's Super average of 370 was unsurpassable. He totally tamed the beleaguered Bears and plundered nine boundaries plus four stellar sixes. His opening stand with left handed Luke Reece of 96 gave the 'Dogs a superb start. Reece pounded nine sparkling boundaries in his quick-fire 59 and pierced the field repeatedly with a flurry of drives and powerful pull shots. Brendan Smith chimed in with an attractive 39 off just 33 balls with five boundaries. Jake Cormack kept the Dion Bourne scoreboard ticking over with a rapid 44 and Nathan McAndrew ripped into the Bears with a classy 59. However, the day belonged to Solway and his five-hour vigil at the crease. The Bears were totally tamed by the rampaging opener and had no answer to his savage stroke play. Skipper Mitch Brown declared the innings closed at 7-423 and Norths were 0-7 in reply.
The seconds emulated the first grade with a run spree at Bon Andrews Oval. Ethan Leten was the batting star with a top class 140 which crushed the Bears. Leten methodically tore apart the North Sydney attack in spectacular fashion. He was the catalyst behind the awesome Bankstown total of 9-411 which really got the Bulldogs barking. Joel Brockley looked set for his triple figures but was tragically run out for 94. It was a sensational knock from the very talented stroke maker who looks set for a stellar season. Matt Dedes has settled into his new club very quickly and showed touches of class with an aggressive 47. His was another run out victim which was disappointing as he looked in full control.
Chris Ridley hammered home the advantage with a confident 46 which tamed the Bears attack. All-rounder Jehan Bilimoria chimed in with a hard hitting 29 whilst wicketkeeper Cameron Middleton contributed a stylish 28. At stumps Norths were 1-47 with enthusiastic Tushaar Garg taking the wicket courtesy of a sharp catch by Ridley.
Norths batted well to score 7-279 at Jensen last Saturday. Nivethan Radhakrishnan bowled enthusiastically to keep the Bears in check with 3-71 from 21 penetrative overs. He dismissed three of the top five batsmen and two of them were clean bowled. The Bears hold the whip hand and the 'Dogs will have to be at the top of their game if they are to chase down the imposing total. Skipper Iain Ridley was pleased with the way the Bankstown bowlers stuck to their task in ideal batting conditions.
Bankstown capitulated for just 136 at Tunks and the Bears are in charge with 1-76. Sanjiv Weerasingham played very much a lone hand for the Bulldogs with a defiant 42. Sanjiv held the brittle Bankstown innings together in difficult circumstances as those around him capitulated. Ryan Malcolm provided support with a fighting 28 but the rest of the batting was substandard.
Chris Stefanish was the spearhead of the belligerent Bulldog attack which bundled out the Bears for an even 200. In reply Bankstown are in a sound position with 2-57. Stefanish ripped into the Bears and beat the bat repeatedly to claim 4-34 in his excellent spell. He troubled all batsmen with his destructive bowling Nathan Setter22 chipped in with 2-27 and made the initial breakthrough. Skipper Alex Kouventaris conceded only 28 from his 12 overs and claimed two wickets also. Bankstown lost two early wickets but then the skipper and Josh Perera rallied to steady the ship. Kouventaris was not out 22 whilst wicketkeeper Johan Perera was unconquered on 24.