Lions crowned premiers

Darley's women's premiership team (Supplied)

Tara Murray

Darley capped off a strong season on the field with its first Gisborne and District Cricket Association women’s T20 title.

The Lions were the standout team all season and showed exactly why in the grand final, beating cross town rival Bacchus Marsh on Sunday in the grand final.

Lions playing coach Aileen Kilmartin was pretty ecstatic following the game.

“We have done well,” she said. “We’ve been in the competition going on our fourth year and it’s amazing to see what we’ve done after struggling for a few years.

“We’ve now come out on top.”

Kilmartin said despite being involved in the local sporting community, she didn’t realise how big the rivalry was between Darley and Bacchus Marsh.

She said they got along really well with the Bulls women and having Bacchus Marsh part of the grand final made it even better.

The Lions won the toss on Sunday and decided to send Bacchus Marsh in.

The Lions had three early wickets and soon had a fourth to have the Bulls in trouble at 4-37.

A partnership between Jenna Fowlie and Emily Kennedy got the Bulls back on track, before they lost their last four wickets for just seven to be bowled out for 92 in the 23 over.

Fowlie top scored for the Bulls with 26.

Tameeka Morrissey was the pick of the bowlers for the Lions, taking 4-17.

Kilmartin was happy in between innings with her side on top of the game.

“As a bowling team, the ladies we do have are all really good friends and bowl well together as a team,” she said.

“All year we’ve been a good batting side and we do have one player that was averaging 70 every game.”

The ace in the pack that Kilmartin knew they had, Kim Bessell stepped up and showed what she could do in the Lions innings.

Bessell hit 72 not out off 67 balls to guide her side to victory. The Lions finished 2-98 in just 20 overs.

For the Bulls Mackenzie Elmer and Kennedy took a wicket each.

Not surprisingly Bessell was named best on ground.

“First ball was a bouncer and she hit it for six,” Kilmartin said. “We’re all like how do you do that?

“We’re struggling to see the ball and she does things like that. Whether it’s batting, bowling or fielding, she’s a great all rounder.”

Kilmartin said they were hoping that the premiership would help them continue to build their female program at the club.

“We have six or seven girls in our junior sides, but can’t play in the GDCA team as you have to be 13.

“My daughter [one of the younger players] is a top five bowler in the competition and we have a couple who were playing footy for Darley who have come and played.

“There’s five or six that will likely make the step up and start playing women’s cricket. Hopefully get more girls on board at Darley.”