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Batsmen look for form after lean round

George GoodwinSouth Western Times
Reece O'Connell will make a welcome return for the Blues.
Camera IconReece O'Connell will make a welcome return for the Blues. Credit: Jon Gellweiler

With their WA Country XI stars back, the Bunbury and Districts Cricket Association will be out to improve on last week’s low-scoring effort, hoping to put up an entertaining round as a prelude to the forthcoming Country Week carnival in Perth.

The region’s major league cricketers will be getting their eye in, turning the clock back to the first round equivalent of the major league where Leschenault, Dalyellup Beach and Collie all collected maximum points in a high-scoring round.

However, the Coalminers have slipped to the bottom of the points ladder headed by the busy Eaton Beavers.

Looking for revenge for their last clash at Forrest Park, the Blues welcome back prolific skipper Reece O’Connell as they aim to cement their second spot with confidence high after blitzing the Settlers on their home turf at Forrest Park.

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Last time they met, Coalminers president Tom Plummer and skipper Greg Tomlinson shone in a 103-run victory away at Forrest Park but with the tough task of Roche Park beckoning, the Blues will need regular wicket takers Allan Utterson, Ben Shipley and Jack Wilson on their mettle in support of their skipper.

Colts sat out last week’s bye while the association’s bowlers were making mayhem in the low-scoring round.

Country XI gun Cruize Ciallella and his Colts have had a good rest with last week’s bye and will be hoping to repeat their first round win over Leschenault.

Colts prolific scorers Murray and Jayden Goodwin and Conner Ipsen failed with the bat the last time they met the Green Caps but still managed a 65-run win.

Last week Leschenault accounted for Collie with Matt Buchanan putting up the only half century of the round.

With cousin and captain Tom Buchanan back this week and the fifth-placed Green Caps on their home turf, they will be hoping for a full house of points to keep them in touch with the top four.

Eaton lead the field going into the Country Week break and are expected to keep their noses in front.

The Beavers travel across town to Dalyellup College where they meet the Settlers with fond memories of a 30-run win. That day Eaton made a disastrous start of 7-106 before the broad shoulders of burly Clayton Caltsounis came to rescue with nine boundaries and five sixes.

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