by St George Cricket Association
CRICKET After featuring in multiple grand finals the Thallon Dropbears have broken through for their maiden SGCA title in barnstorming fashion. The Thallon side has put together a dominant season as they wrestled the Trevor Hourne Premiership Shield back to the Francis Hotel to the chorus of undefeated premiers.
Dropbears skipper Nick Hill won yet another toss and quickly stuck to this year's winning formula of batting first. After a nervous start the Dirran bowling attack settled into their groove and put on a tight display of bowling as Thallon stuck to a game plan of making sure they batted out the 40 and fought their way to a hard earned 3 for 66 at drinks.
The not-out partnership at drinks of Wildman and Lockwood then lifted the tempo after the interval as they now concentrated on building a defendable total. Wildman was caught in the deep for 29 but Lockwood's earlier stroke play had already turned to hard-hitting mode as he started clearing the boundary at will. He was eventually knocked over for a match high 76 but had laid the platform for the last couple of overs. A Thallon side that put together many impressive first innings totals this season, scored at seven an over for their second stanza to set Dirran a solid 210 for victory on a slow outfield.
The Dingoes applied similar tactics in their approach to the run chase and stoically kept out a fierce Thallon opening bowling pair that have claimed all-comers this season.
To Dirran's credit they made it to drinks at 1 for 66 and statistically a better position than Thallon at the same point. Top order contributions from skipper Wally Bell, Andrew McCosker and Tom Sandow all had the Thallon attack on their toes and relishing the call of "game-on” at the halfway point. However, not long after the drinks break a devastating spell from Billy Parcell tore the Dirran line up apart as he bagged five wickets and only missed a grand final hat trick by one ball. This also sealed him his consecutive player of the final award but this year his bowling was punctuated by a couple of brilliant displays in the field.
As the thunder made its way over the Balonne, the Dropbears bolted back to Thallon to hang the premiers trophy on the wall. A treasured moment.