SALE-Maffra is likely to miss the Gippsland Cricket League final, suffering its third consecutive defeat at the hands of top of the table Bairnsdale in round three.
All players and umpires wore black armbands and observed a minute silence as part of the Phillip Hughes tribute round.
The Sharks won the toss and elected to bat at Lucknow, but were never able to get on top of some fine bowling and Ben Saxon (41) was a lone figure at the wicket against his former representative side.
Great bowling from Bairnsdale’s Nick Davies, who took 5/19 off his 10 overs, ensured Sale-Maffra’s demise as they collapsed to be all out for 125.
Bairnsdale were untroubled to reach their target and finished at 5-128 off 34 overs. Hayden Erfurth (43) and Scott Davison (32) were the home team’s top contributors.
Bairnsdale remains undefeated ladder and seems assured of a finals appearance once again.
Sale-Maffra will aim for its first win when it hosts Leongatha at Stephenson Park on Sunday, December 14.
SALE-Maffra will miss the under 18 final after going down to Central Gippsland at Heyfield.
Louis Howard posted an unbeaten 81, but couldn’t find support with the Sharks bowled out for 127.
Kerrod Macgregor-Davies took four wickets to give the Sharks a chance, but Matthew Powell helped steer the visitor to a two wicket win.
Sale-Maffra will play Bairnsdale in the final round at Lindenow.
SALE-Maffra scored a win over Central Gippsland at Rosedale to remain in the hunt for a berth in the final.
Tim Dessent top scored with 26, while Elliott Durrant, Connor Hughes and Harrison Evans also reached double figures in the Sharks’ 117.
The Sharks attack showed discipline to protect its small total, bowling Central Gippsland out for 83.
Daine McGuiness and Mitch Rowley led the way, each taking three wickets, with Zac Durrant the other multiple wicket taker.
Sale-Maffra will take on Bairnsdale at Lakes Entrance in a mini-final, with the victor to book a place in the final with Warragul.
SALE-Maffra women had the bye.
The second placed Sharks will meet the third placed Morwell in the next round at Wurruk.