Riley breaks Cavs' spirit before Bushies bowlers win title
THE Hervey Bay Cricket Association grand final could have been so much different had it not been for Bushrangers stalwart Jason Riley's spectacular innings.
The undefeated minor premiers relied on strong, consistent knocks from leading runscorers Brent Dean and Nic Kelsey during the season, but Cavaliers were on to it.
They dismissed the pair cheaply, and were in control when Jesse Riley was dismissed for a duck at 5-37.
"I sat by myself for an hour and threw my stuff everywhere, I wasn't too happy,” Jesse said.
History shows he need not have worried, as his dad Jason came to the side's rescue.
He remained unbeaten on 73 from 113 balls as he, along with well-timed cameos from Justin Frohling (31) and Isaac Kelsey (23 not out) steered Bushrangers to 7-187 from 40 overs.
"We needed guys to steady to ship if they fell cheaply so lucky the old man stepped up,” Jesse said. "I think he's only had one fifty this season. Cavs probably dropped their heads after that, they would've thought they had us.”
Cavaliers looked to be cruising when Edgar Wyvill (42) fell to make it 2-85, but Bushrangers' bowlers had other ideas.
Frohling (pictured) took 3-7 from an incredible eight over spell that included five maidens, but the 16-over stretch shared by Mankul Singh (0-11) and Peter Kelsey (4-21) choked the life out of Cavaliers' chase.
"They started at the same time, and to take 4-32 from 16 overs - it changed the game,” Jesse said.
They lost their last eight wickets for 34 runs, which handed Bushrangers a comfortable 68-run win. Jesse said Frohling deserved to be man of the match for his all-round performance.