A 144-RUN partnership between a veteran and its captain has guided Bookaar to its second win in as many starts.
Opener Simon Baker (99 runs) and Pelicans’ leader Fraser Lucas (51) led their team to an 86-run win against last summer’s runner-up Pomborneit at the Camperdown Showgrounds on Saturday.
Following on from last week’s win against Heytesbury Rebels, Bookaar showed it will be well in the mix to play finals again this summer.
“The best part is we’ve started off against two quality opponents and won both matches,” Lucas said.
“We know the one-dayers are probably going to be as important as the two-dayers – getting a good start to the year is going to help us in the long-run.”
The Pelicans’ biggest early season test will come this Saturday against reigning premier Mortlake, which has started the season with two wins and also took out the South West Cricket Twenty20 tournament.
“Mortlake have proven themselves over the years and there’s no debating they’re the team to beat, but we’re really looking forward to see how we go against those guys,” Lucas said.
“We’re fairly confident, but you don’t know what to expect on the day.”
The Pelicans’ captain was confident his side had the batting and bowling depth to give the Cats a run for their money.
The strength of Bookaar’s batting was again on display against Pomborneit, with an early partnership setting up the innings, while Henry Green (49) and Eddie Lucas (28) also made good contributions late in the innings.
“For the second week in a row, we’ve had a really solid partnership early on in the innings that has provided a platform to set up the innings,” Lucas said.
“Simon was pretty unlucky to be caught out on the boundary on 99 – it would’ve been nice for him to make another century. He’s already in good touch.”
With a good spread of bowlers to call on, the Pelicans were confident of defending their 5-261, though the total was higher than they had been expecting.
“The ground was actually quicker than I thought it would’ve been on Saturday,” Lucas said.
“I was thinking we would’ve been defending a score of around 200 – to end up on 260 was really good, but I guess it’s going to make it harder each home game knowing we’re going to need to find about 250 runs.”
After a bit of a slow start to the bowling, the wickets began to fall and Bookaar had Pomborneit at 5-48, before Steven Murphy (21), Stephen Walters (55) put on a 51-run stand.
Bradley Hillman (23) and Tom Place (15) also chipped in, but it wasn’t enough as Pomborneit slumped to its second defeat in a row, dismissed for 175.
Joe Muir, playing his first game for the year, snared 3-13.
Bookaar will host Mortlake at Camperdown Showgrounds this Saturday.
In other Webber and Chivell Division One matches, Mortlake was made to work hard to keep its winning run alive against Noorat at the Noorat Recreation Reserve.
Shane Hutchins (45) and Will Pomorin (40) guided the home side to 135 after early wickets saw Noorat at 2-1 and 3-19 when Pomorin stepped up to the crease.
Hutchins joined him at 4-35 as the pair went about restoring Noorat’s innings.
Shane Slater was again the hero for Mortlake, first claiming 4-19 with the ball in hand, then top-scoring with an unbeaten 55 to steer the Cats to victory.
Terang posted a 24-run win over Heytesbury Rebels at Terang Turf.
Jay Wynd was the home side’s best with the bat, making 34 as Terang posted 131, while captain Brett Hunger claimed 3-24 as Heytesbury was bowled out for 107 in 41.4 overs.
Daniel Balcombe (26) and Sam Newey (32) combined for an important 48-run partnership in the Rebels’ chase to give them a chance after they had been 6-36, but it was not enough to get them over the line.
Opener Kaplan McCann (81) and captain Brent Goonan (61 not out) set Cobden up for its first win of the season, a 125-run victory over Simpson at Simpson.
Captain Nick Harding took 3-32 for the home team and also led the scoring (23 runs), but was one of only three Simpson batsmen to reach double figures.
Cobden bowler Matt Ross-Watson snared figures of 5-19.