By Tara Murray
Sunbury’s campaign in the Victorian Turf Cricket Association T20 competition came to an end on Sunday at the hands of Sunshine United.
Sunbury had already upset one senior division side on the way to the semi-finals, but was up against it when it faced United. Sunbury usually plays in division 5, while United plays in the top division.
Sunbury captain-coach Craig Ballinger said despite being a massive underdog, they were disappointed not to go further.
“It wasn’t the result we were after,” he said.
“I’m very proud of the boys with what they’ve achieved in their first year in the competition. We’re moving in the right direction.
“The belief in the group, they don’t believe they were lucky to be there. We have more than the ability to challenge any side.”
Ballinger said United had done a massive amount of work to get the ground up to standard, after it was under water earlier in the day after two days of rain.
Sunbury was sent in and got off to the perfect start to be 0-20.
But when they lost their first wicket it started a collapse and the Roar couldn’t to put partnerships together.
They finished 8-72 off their 20 overs.
“It was never going to be enough,” Ballinger said.
“They got the best out of the wicket and we didn’t adjust to it. Credit to them.
“They were putting the ball in good areas.”
Justin Nelson top scored with 19, with Stephen Treweek (12 runs) the only other player in double figures.
Sunshine finished 2-73, making the runs with nearly four overs remaining.
Ballinger said they made United work for the runs, with the innings going deep but they weren’t helped by a couple of missed chances in the field.
Jason McGann got both wickets for Sunbury.
Ballinger said the group would take belief in itself into the rest of the season.
“There’s a great mix of guys in the T20 side,” he said. “Not just guys in the ones, but guys from the second and third XIs.
Hopefully the whole club will use it going forward Meanwhile, Sunbury’s division 5 match against Bellbridge ended in a draw on Saturday because of a washout.
Ballinger said the washout was disappointing and now left them with a do or die match in the final round.
Sunbury sits in second place with six points separating the top six teams.
“To have only lost two matches and having to fight to play finals is a bit hard to believe,” Ballinger said.
“We’ll turn up and do what we know we can do and we’re more than capable of giving it a shake.”
In the women’s competition, Sunbury was knocked out by Westmeadows in the semi-finals.
Facing an undefeated Westmeadows, it was always going to be a tough ask for the Roar.
The Roar started well and were 0-23 before they crumbled to be all out for just 57. Extras contributed for 26 of those runs.
The Warriors took their time and got the runs with three overs remaining. They finished 3-62 and will face Keilor in the grand final.
Keilor won a bowl-off with St Andrews to earn its spot in the grand final.