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    DECIDER: West Wimmera’s Nathan Alexander took 1-5 and contributed 93 runs to his team’s grand-final winning total on Sunday at Horsham City Oval. Alexander was named man of the match for his overall performance in the game. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER
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    West Wimmera Warriors, 2023-24 HCA One Day premiers.
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    Nathan Alexander, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Trevor Polkinghorne, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Nathan Alexander, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Lucas Smith, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Chaminda Gamage, Homers, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Chaminda Gamage, Homers, West Wimmera vs Homers, HCA One Day Grand Final.
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    Colts have won a B Grade one-day premiership.

Warriors win Horsham cricket one-day premiership

By Sean O’Connell

West Wimmera posted a convincing 88-run win against Homers in the Horsham Cricket Association A Grade one-day grand final on Sunday. 

The eventual winners batted first, with the top order all making it well into double figures and scoring quickly. 

The pick of the bunch was Nathan Alexander, who hit 93 from 82 deliveries before he was bowled by Gibson Perry, who also took the wicket of Brad Alexander. 

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Homers bowlers Adam Atwood, three wickets, and Chaminda Gamage, two, were instrumental to their team’s efforts in keeping West Wimmera’s total down. 

Gamage’s impressive figures of 2-10 from nine overs included an LBW dismissal of Brett Jensz for a duck and Liam Preston for just two. 

West Wimmera finished 9-214 after its allotted 45 overs, giving Homers a large total to chase down. 

The Warriors were defensively solid from the beginning of their stint in the field and dismissed a number of Homers batters cheaply. 

Bowler Xavier Bone tempted three Homers batters into being caught out, including opener Patrick Mills who was caught by Mitchell Dahlenburg and his replacement Logan Millar, with Trevor Polkinghorne holding onto the catch. 

Homers’ batting steadied in the middle order, but the team was unable to score at the rate required and were dismissed after 34 overs for 126, 88 runs shy of their grand-final opponents. 

In the B Grade one-day grand final, played on the same day at Coughlin Park, Colts’ Josh Colbert was awarded man of the match as his team finished seven-wicket winners against Rupanyup-Minyip.

The fates of the two A Grade grand finalists were reversed during the first day of play in two-day competition on Saturday. 

Homers batted out the day against Horsham Saints to conclude at 8-247 after 75 overs. Atwood remained not-out on 111 after coming in at number four for Homers, hitting nine boundaries including a six. 

The next highest scorers were Mills, who was trapped LBW by Mark Crafter on 38, and Gammage, who Crafter bowled for 25. 

West Wimmera won the toss and bowled first in its match-up against Lubeck-Murtoa. 

Shannon Reddie got the Mudlarks off to a strong start and carried his bat with 84 when his last partner fell. 

Jordan Gurry and Nathan Alexander both secured three wickets for West Wimmera, with many Lubeck-Murtoa batters finding it difficult to stay at the crease long enough to adjust. 

With the Mudlarks all-out for 151 after nearly 50 overs, West Wimmera looked to brave a wicket where bowlers had mostly prevailed so far in the game. 

Nic Ballagh was dominant with the ball for the Mudlarks, recording 4-21, including Jobe Dickinson for 21, courtesy of a Xavier Shevlin catch. 

West Wimmera had enough time remaining to face 23 overs, but was largely unsuccessful with a grand final around the corner and finding itself 6-60 going into the second day of play. 

In the last A Grade game to begin on Saturday, Horsham Tigers bowled first against Bullants. 

Tyler Puls led the charge in the Tigers’ bowling attack to find the early wickets of Justtin Combe, 12, and Jamie Byrne, 17, who were caught by Marty Knight and Aaron Leith, respectively. 

Matthew Combe, 50, and Shane Oakley, 38, were the Bullants’ highest scorers, having hit a combined 17 boundaries. 

Horsham Tigers went in to bat for the remainder of play after bowling Bullants out for 194 after 52.1 overs.

Brenton Hallam, 38, and Dom Rose, 24, had strong showings for the Tigers early before Hallam was run out by Oakley. 

Jordan McDonald then bowled Rose, but it was Matthew Combe who got the next three wickets to see the Tigers finish the day at 5-76. 

Leith and Angus Adams were both given out LBW from a Combe ball, while Jake Durdin was bowled, with the trio all unable to make it to double figures. 

The scheduled game between Laharum and Blackheath-Dimboola did not go ahead and the two teams will play a one-day game on Saturday. 

Results, at the end of day one:  Homers 8-247 v Horsham Saints; Lubeck Murtoa 10-151 v West Wimmera 6-60; Bullants 10-194 v Horsham Tigers 5-76.

The entire February 28, 2024 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire February 28, 2024 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!