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Match Day

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Match Day

Michael Sparks gets the huge wicket of Nathan Douglas. Photo © Michael Mirabella

Macgibbon Grand Final - Trinity Willison and Deepdene Uniting will battle it out for the third consecutive season

Trinity Willison looking at a three-peat, Deepdene Uniting searching for elusive flag

Modern-day rivals to battle it out for the Macgibbon Shield

Semi Finals Summary

The 2023-24 Macgibbon Shield Grand Final will be contested by the two best sides this season. Trinity Willison have lost just one match, and tied another. Deepdene Uniting lost two - but tellingly both against their Grand Final opponent.
These two sides will both come into the match in red-hot form, with decisive semi-final wins. At stake for Trinity Willison is a piece of history - three-peat Macgibbon Shield titles are rare, and for Deepdene Uniting, a chance to stake their claim as one of the great Macgibbon Shield teams of this decade (so far).

Ben Douglas played a patient 87 from 222 balls, but it's not enough As Trinity Willison chase 238 with 27 overs to spare.

Photo © Michael Mirabella

On an incredibly warm weekend Boroondara won the toss and gladly chose to bat first. Opener Chris Rosengarten was quickly heading back to the shade however, as Trinity Willison skipper Nick Sparks (2/38) struck with an LBW given 5th ball of the match. Boroondara went right back into their shells, especially with Sparks picking up a second early wicket, which left it up to the Douglas boys to rescue the innings.
Through some classy strokes and well measure patience, the pair put on 48 runs before Nathan Douglas (24) was also trapped on the crease, this time by Michael Sparks (1/71) who well and truely knew the significance of removing the Boroondara captain.
Will Easton (26) joined Ben at the crease and continued on the improved signs with a handy 64 run partnership before some confusion lead to a costly run out. Ben Douglas was still in control at one end but was losing partners at the other end, especially once Tom Clarke (4/52) came in and cleaned up the tail. Douglas was finally dismissed just shy of a century for 87 off 222 balls, and this helped put together an impressive 10/238 for the visitors, though on the quick Frog Hollow ground they would need to bowl well to defend it.
Nick Sparks got off to a fast start with 40 off 71 balls, and this set the tone for Trinity Willison's innings - No quick wickets. Michael Sparks joined his brother at 1/44 before Nick was dismissed by his captain counterpart, as Nathan Douglas took a handy 2/36.
But Michael's good form continued with a quick 68 (70 balls), Matthew Veitch at the other end anchored out the rest of the innings with 27* from 91 balls. Once Sparks was dismissed at a comfortable 3/146, Charlie Clarke wanted to wrap this game up, smashing 68 from just 48 balls that included eight 4's and five 6's and Trinity Willison passed Boroondara's total with 5 wickets in hand and 27 overs to spare.

Trinity Willison 5/241 def. Boroondara 10/238
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Dan Harrison claimed both openers early, and sets up a dominant bowling display from Deepdene Uniting.

Photo © Michael Mirabella

Burwood Uniting Canterbury also decided that winning the toss and sending the opposition in to field in the heat, was an appealing move.
But Deepdene were pumped, and decided the best way to beat the heat was to dismiss the visitors as quickly as possible. Opening quick Dan Harrison (3/51) had BUCCC shell shocked, picking up edges on both openers to leave the score at 2/7. The news just got worse for Burwood Uniting Canterbury with only three batters reaching double figures as Adam Peat (2/22), captain Harry Riddle (2/28), and Patrick Gregory (2/21) each shared in the spoils. The one bright spot for BUCCC was the definition of a 'Captain's knock' from Rishab Guddadamane hitting a classy 74 from 131 balls - and was the last wicket to fall, as Burwood Uniting Canterbury were all out for 122 in just 46 overs, leaving plenty of play for Deepdene Uniting to make a dent in the chase. They wasted no time, playing aggresively, as Christopher Menz (31) and Daniel Harford (32) did the majority of the damage to finish the first day of play at 5/100. Josh Hillyer (2/5) claimed some crucial late wickets that gave BUCCC a slight whiff of bringing this game back, but Deepdene Uniting polished off the match quickly on day 2, to win by 5 wickets.

Deepdene Uniting 5/123 def. Burwood Uniting Canterbury 10/122
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Rishab Guddadamane gave his side everything, in a crucial knock of 74 from 131 balls. Photo © Michael Mirabella