A STUNNING five wicket haul from Brad Hillman helped Pomborneit open their South West Cricket season in style on Saturday.
The Bulls, who hosted Cobden in the opening match, successfully defended a paltry total of 90 on the back of Hillman’s efforts with the ball.
The opening bowler claimed figures of 5/12 from 8.4 overs, which included the key scalps of Kappy McCann (one) and Johno Benallack (zero).
Bulls skipper Grant Place said Hillman was able to save the Bulls with the ball following their failures at the crease.
“He bowled unbelievably well,” he said.
“He’s been bowling really well the last couple of weeks, I had a net session against him during the week and he bowled as well as he ever has when I’ve faced him.
“It’s good going for someone at his age now, he’s still sending them through nicely.”
Hillman’s five wicket haul followed on from top scores of 15 from Tom Doolan and 13 from Dave Murphy in the first innings.
The pair along with Clinton Place (10) was able to push the Bulls just shy of three figures, with Grant Place pleased to walk away with a win having defended their low total.
“I suppose these early games where you underperform and still find a way to win those close games are really good wins,” he said.
“One, two or three games like that where you underperform with the bat or ball and you don’t get the (right) result can prove costly later in the year when its tight for points with other clubs.
“Early wins are always important.”
He said the Bulls “were happy with 50 per cent of our game” but conceded their batting effort certainly left a lot to be desired.
“Our bowling and fielding was unbelievably good, we were sharper in the field and tighter with our bowling than we were at times last year,” Place said.
“But the batting was fairly rusty to say the least.
“It wasn’t 10 blokes throwing their wicket away or anything, we just kept losing wickets (regularly).
“I’m not sure if we were leaving enough balls or maybe we went in with too much of an attacking mindset or whether we were in a bit of a hurry maybe (that was causing wickets to fall).”
Place said Tom Place also bowled well despite going wicketless in the absence of Lahiru Fernando with Tharaka Sendanayake (3/19) reaping the rewards of Tom Place’s efforts.
In the lower grades, Pomborneit recorded strong victories in low scoring affairs, downing Cobden in division two and Mortlake in division three.
The Bulls made 8/85 batting first in the division two game and bowled the Knights out for 58 to secure a 27 run victory.
Wes Lenehan (41 not out) and Luke Lenehan (4/23) led the way with bat and ball while Tayla Reynolds (2/10) and Daniel Lenehan (2/12) also performed well.
In division three, the Bulls easily chased down the Cats’ total of 76, passing the target without the loss of a wicket.
Matthew Richardson (48 not out) and Brent Noonan (27 not out) both finished unbeaten at the crease after Hunter Reynolds (3/14), Stephen Walters (2/7) and Daniel Missen (2/8) had earlier ripped though Mortlake’s batting line-up.
The Bulls will face Ecklin (Pomborneit) and Terang (Terang No.2 Oval) respectively next weekend.