Clubbers bounce back

Yarraville Club's Chinthaka Jayasinghe. (Joe Mastroianni). 309726_08

Harper Sercombe

Yarraville Club has made a strong start to its defence of the Victorian Turf Cricket Association senior division premiership.

The Clubbers set out to chase Keilor’s first innings total at Joe Brown Recreation Reserve on Saturday afternoon.

Keilor won the toss at elected to bat last week and put up a healthy total of 251 but were bowled out within 75.3 overs.

The Clubbers were clinical in its chase, making the runs from just 63.4 overs, and only three down, finishing 3-254.

Opening batsmen James Damjanovski and Allister Powell got the Clubbers away to a strong start. New recruit Michael Hill, batting at three, added to the start with a little cameo of 28, before the chase really started to move along.

Former Sri Lankan first class batsmen Chinthaka Jayasinghe and Sangaran Nandhalal brought the game home for the Clubbers in fine fashion.

Jayasinghe smashed 101, not-out, off just 84 balls which included 12 fours and five sixes, while Nandhalal played second fiddle scoring an unbeaten 53 from 91 deliveries.

Clubbers captain-coach Mitch Johnstone said he was pleased with the convincing performance his side was able to display.

“We thought that 250, all things being equal, was still under par in the conditions,” he said.

“It was gettable if we applied ourselves. Our openers got us off to a pretty good platform, and Michael Hill, who has been a new inclusion for us, looked good before chopping on.

“Then [Jayasinghe and Nandhalal] got to work and brought the house down.

“They’re very different players, Jayasinghe hits to unconventional areas and has been a stalwart in the VTCA for over a decade now.

“Sangaran applied himself, and had some lovely shots down the ground. They compliment each other very well.

“We feel like our batting is starting to come together, we’ve had three different centurions in the first three rounds too which is pleasing.”

With 16.2 overs still remaining in the day’s play that went unused in the chase, it is a positive sign, especially with plenty of wickets still left in the shed, Johnstone said.

“Two or three of our really good players go at a run a ball, which when we’re playing 80 over cricket, which is essentially just a big one-dayer, so we have got to keep the game moving forward,” he said.

“Our guys have no hesitation in doing that so it was a good display of ball striking… they had a pretty reasonable attack as well, so it was a pretty dominant display.”

The Clubbers face St Albans on Saturday for the start of another two-day clash.