ROCHESTER United and Kyabram Fire Brigade will meet in the Goulburn Murray Cricket A grade grand final for the third consecutive season after both easily won their semi-finals on Saturday.
The Flames’ 7/320 proved too much for Cooma while United had little trouble chasing down Tongala’s total of 122.
Rochester United and Kyabram Fire Brigade have easily been the best two teams all season, finishing first and second on the ladder respectively.
It was the Flames who inflicted United’s only loss for the season in round 12 and the form of both sides sets up a mouth-watering season showdown this weekend.
■ FIRE Brigade made quick work of Moama in Saturday’s B grade semi final.
Steven Thomson starred for the Flames, taking 4/11, while Jarrod Chapman took 3/11 in an equally strong performance.
Moama’s batsmen were unable to stand the heat.
Graeme Mitchell was a saving grace for the team, making 21 not out, while Nicholas McKenner made 18.
But neither were able to score enough to present a challenge, with Moama all out for 80 off 31.4 overs.
Michael Kent decided to end the match as quickly as possible.
He would make an unbeaten 56, including nine 4’s, as his side chased the total down in 16.3 overs.
Moama tried valiantly in their bowling spell, Clay McGregor’s 2/24 accounting for two of Kyabram’s three wickets to fall.
Kyabram will face Cooma is the B grade grand final next week, after their victory over Northern United.
United chose to bat first, but could only manage a score of 104.
Samuel Barbagallo was chief destroyer for Cooma, taking figures of 3/22 from his 7.3 overs.
Cooma did not make the result easy for themselves.
Ethan Palma-Ludeman finished unbeaten on 33, but his teammates were unable to do the same.
Three players — Nick Hubble, Sam Spicer and Tom Holman would all contribute 18, while Russell Napier was run out for 11.
Cooma chased the runs down in 37 overs to set up a grand final berth.
■ ECHUCA South was not going to make things easy for Kyabram Fire Brigade in C grade.
Choosing to bat first, opening pair of Lachlan Harbinson and Luke Diss put together a 75 run opening stand.
While a number of wickets fell around him, Harbison was able to remain strong throughout the innings and put 75 of his own on the board.
William Rolfe was the other hero of the innings for South, making a strong 41, with the team finishing on a strong score of 9/203.
Mitch Dunne took 3/22 to be the pick of the bowlers.
The Flames lost just two wickets en route to to chasing the total down, both of whom contributed strongly to the total.
Justin Elliott made 42, while opening partner Brendan White produced a quality dig of 89.
South tried valiantly, but the Flames would chase the total down in 31.3 overs to advance.
The other spot in the grand final was decided with the clash of the twin towns — Echuca taking on Moama.
Echuca did not have a batsman who dominated, with the whole side playing their roles in the opening innings of the match to get the team to a respectable score.
Echuca would finish on 7/127 at the end of its 40 overs.
Nathan Burrell top scored for the side, making 26, while teammate Rick Nathan added 20.
It was an evenly spread bowling performance, with no bowler taking more than two wickets.
Hudson Moyle was the star for Moama with the bat however, putting out a score of 46 not out, as Moama chased down the total in 32.5 overs.
■ MOAMA will meet Rushworth in the D grade grand final.
Jack Russell (57no) and Conrad Farrell (55) helped steer Moama to 9/200 before the bowlers restricted Echuca to 9/165 in the semi-final on Saturday.
A stunning bowling performance of 5/13 from Regan Hanson saw Rushworth rout Kyabram Fire Brigade White for just 84 in the other semi-final.
Rushworth had trouble chasing down the runs for the loss of only three wickets as Callan Chillingsworth top scored with an unbeaten 51.