Sweeney Cup front-runners, the Gundaroo Gunners, suffered a wake-up call on Saturday, losing easily to competition cellar-dwellers Murrumbateman 2.
Gundaroo won the toss and batted on Pink Stumps Day at Gundaroo Oval, but was rolled for just 132 by the last-placed side in the 26th over. Mitch Callagher was the only Gunner who batted well, notching 41 runs. Wayne McIllhatton was the pick of the bowlers for the Maulers, taking four wickets.
Murrumbateman 2 wasted no time when they were in bat, chasing down the runs quickly for the loss of five wickets. McIllhatton again dominated, scoring 39. J Gray helped, compiling 37 in a 78 run, first-wicket, stand.
“It was a really big wake up call for us, especially going into the finals,” Gunners captain Scott Harding admitted to the Tribune.
The Pink Stumps Day raised around $1000 for the McGrath Foundation and Harding said it was a great event and one that he hopes will continue in the future.
Over at Yass High School on John Allen Oval, Bookham had little trouble accounting for the Aussie Horns.
Bookham won the toss, batted, and was able to register a respectable 144 before the side was all out in the 39th over.
David Bonnette and Bruce Hazell were the pick of the batsmen, making 41 and 28 respectively. In response the Aussie Horns could only scrape together 106 runs. The Horns remain in third place, three points clear of the Golf Club Taipans.
In the other Sweeney Cup fixture played at Dalton Oval, it was the hosts who comprehensively took the points.
Despite sitting outside the top four, the Dingoes blasted 150 off 28 overs and reminded the Golf Club why they won the competition last year. Neil Corby was the standout for Dalton scoring 54. For the Golf Club, Steve Greenwood and Daniel Kemp each got three wickets.
The Taipans never really got close in their run chase and, despite a gritty 42 by Lachlan Kemp and a 24 by Steve Greenwood, they fell short making 94. Christian Apps starred for Dalton, taking four wickets.
The top two teams, Gundaroo and Bookham, are locked in to play in the finals but which sides will make up the next two slots is unknown. Only Murrumbateman 2 is a definite to miss out.