The Bankstown Sports Bulldogs lost to Parramatta on Saturday at Memorial Oval in a run chase that was always going to require a huge effort from the locals. The Bulldogs tried hard to wrestle the momentum but kept running into trouble and capitulated for 263. This was well short of the massive 430 posted by the Eels.
The Bulldogs were in strife soon after play resumed on Saturday and they slumped to 3-44. To the rescue came Mitch Brown and the very talented stroke-maker Brendan Smith. The pair kept the Dion Bourne scoreboard ticking over at a rapid rate with an imposing partnership of 143. Brown plundered 13 boundaries which included flowing drives that rocketed to the fence. He is one of the most talented Bulldogs in the kennel and powered his way to 80 from just 90 deliveries. However, his dismissal triggered a diabolical collapse and seven wickets fell in quick succession.
Through it all Brendan Smith played a fighting lone hand for his beloved Bulldogs. He was the second last batsman to be dismissed and his punishing 121 was a sensational knock. Smith put the writing on the wall when he averaged 61 from limited opportunities in first grade last season. The 19-year-old has a very bright future indeed and is renowned as one of the best fieldsmen in the club. His 121 included 15 sparkling boundaries and an explosive six. He hammered the ball behind point repeatedly with fiercely hit cuts and square drives.
In Sunday’s Kingsgrove Sports T20 Cup 20 game the Eels again proved too good for the Doggies. Bankstown scored 7-137 but the Eels cruised to 2-141 in reply. That man Brendan Smith topped off a great weekend with a hard hit 54 whilst former NSW Blues all-rounder and Club Bowling Coach Aaron Bird chimed in with a useful 28.
Next Saturday the Bulldogs play St George at Bankstown Oval commencing at 10.30.
The seconds tumbled to defeat at the hands of the Eels last Saturday. Parra scored 292 whilst the Bulldogs totaled 266.
Matt Simpson the ever-reliable opener was once again in superb touch with a majestic 73. He plundered nine boundaries in his classy knock. Zeeshan Ahmed combined with Simpson in a 124 run opening stand of which he contributed a defiant 57. Skipper Joel Brockley carried on the good work with a responsible 44 but the rest of the batsmen capitulated meekly. Tushaar Garg was the pick of the Bulldogs with three handy wickets.
Parramatta scored 277 and in reply the Bulldogs capitulated for 160 at Old King’s Nivethan Radhakrishnan held the brittle Bulldog batting together with a defiant 60. The only support he received was from Mansuhk Singh with 25. Dayne Heward and Mohammed Hossain both claimed two wickets but man of the match was Radhakrishnan who kept the Eels in check with 4-52. His guile and control troubled all batsmen.
Parramatta were rolled for 186 but were pipped by the Bulldogs who scored 188 at Merrylands. Aggressive opening bowlers Mat Kelly and persistent Chris Stefanish both claimed two wickets. The experienced Kelly and lively Stefanish form a dynamic duo with the new ball. However, the irrepressible Koby Layton took the honours with 3-31 from 18.3 overs including an impressive 7 maidens.
The Eels scored 328 at Grahame Thomas which was too many for the Bulldogs who capitulated for 193. Sohan Kumar was always on target and was rewarded with three wickets. Tom Ramage added 29 but the indomitable Blake Pearson had a magnificent match with a fine 63 and four wickets. Pearson is having a stellar season and definitely has a bright future.