Cricket: Kelly heroics can't save Geyser

By Gary Hamilton-Irvine


The dream for cup glory was shortlived for two of Rotorua's second-tier cricket teams.

Rotorua's Geyser Cricket Club and BOP Indians Cricket Club crashed out of the McNaughton Trophy competition at the weekend.

Geyser lined up with a young side and fought hard against Greerton Cricket Club (Tauranga) on Saturday, losing by 51 runs.

Rotorua's BOP Indians defaulted in their match against Te Puke Cricket Club after a mix up in registration saw them pull out of the competition.

This was the first year either club had entered the reserve grade knock-out competition, which is contested by reserve-grade teams across the Bay of Plenty.

Geyser bowled first in their match at Smallbone Park and had Greerton in trouble at 168/7 after 31 overs. However, a brave bottom-order bash saw Greerton score another 111 runs in the remaining nine overs to finish their innings at 279/9.

In response, Geyser could manage only 218 all out after 38.1 overs.

Batting at number three, Sam Kelly top scored for Geyser with 63 runs.

He was helped by brother Liam, who scored 27, but in the end it was not enough to rescue Geyser from defeat.

Eight teams will now contest the second round of the McNaughton Trophy on February 17, including Rotorua's Central Cricket Club and Taupo Wanderers Cricket Club.

The competition holds a rich significance in second-tier cricket, with reserve grade teams given a chance to make a name for themselves.

The origins of the Baywide reserve grade prize come from the donation by the McNaughton family in Te Puke.

At first, the trophy was offered only to second-tier teams from the Tauranga and Te Puke sub-associations.

However, a change several years ago saw the competition expanded to include all reserve grade sides in Bay of Plenty cricket.

In the past two seasons, Mount Maunganui have beaten Katikati twice to lift the trophy. In 2010, Rotorua's Central Cricket Club made the final but lost to Katikati.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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