Diggers Rest Bulla through to grand final

Diggers Rest Bulla’s Raveen Yasas. (Shawn Smits) 205498_18

Tara Murray

Diggers Rest Bulla is hoping to turn the tables on Gisborne in the Gisborne and District Cricket Association McIntyre Cup grand final.

The Dragons taught the Burras a lesson the last time the two teams met, but the Burras are confident they can come away with the premiership.

Burras playing coach Rasika Batepola said they had been confident at the beginning of the year that they had the team to go all the way.

On the weekend, they proved too strong for Sunbury United.

Batting first, the Burras made 7-281 from their overs.

Indika Massalage top scored with 81, but the key was contributions throughout the order with five players reaching at least 20.

“It was a team effort after a good opening stand,” Batepola said.

“The middle order clicked around Raveen Yaas, while Warren Berry anchored the innings with 37 not out.”

Batepola said they were more than happy with that score, having aimed for about 250 to 260.

He said the key for them was to get Dilan Chandima out early, which they did.

United looked good at 1-102, but their middle order struggled and they were bowled out for 202 in the 67th over.

Batepola said Rhys Berry, who took three wickets, was the pick of the bowlers, while Kevin Barker, who also took three wickets, did a massive job holding up one end.

“Their middle order tried really hard, but we were able to finish off the game really well.”

The win sees the Burras in their first McIntyre Cup grand final since the 2015-16 season. On that occasion, they tied with Gisborne, which won the premiership having finished higher on the ladder.

They will again face Gisborne in the grand final.

Batepola said they know if they play their best they can get the job done.

“It’s really good, we’ve got two out of the three sides in grand finals,” he said.

“We won at Gisborne last year and hopefully we can do the same thing this year. If you want to win the flag, you need to win these sorts of matches.”

Tara Murray