Pressure to perform

BUNDALAGUAH taking a first innings lead into the second day of Sale-Maffra cricket’s penultimate round has put pressure on three other finals contenders to perform on Saturday.

The Bulls, who are four points outside the top four in sixth place, will resume their match against Rosedale-Kilmany on 5-103, having bowled the Warriors out for 102 last weekend.

This means the Bulls have already secured at least four competition points. If they avoid a reverse outright defeat, the Bulls will receive six points, enough to move them back into the top four.

There could be a temptation for the home side to go for quick runs early Saturday to give them a decent lead and enough time to bowl the third-placed Warriors out a second time to claim 10 points for an outright win.

Ben Saxon will begin the day 62 with James Matthews yet to score.

With their hold on a finals berth in question, if the Warriors can get early wickets quickly tomorrow, they’re a chance to record a reverse outright.

SALE requires another 59 runs to defeat Boisdale-Briagolong, but have already lost four wickets.

The fourth-placed Swans are only two points ahead of Maffra in fifth. With Bundalaguah already banking points, the Swans could fall out of the top four if they lose on Saturday.

Steve Parry will resume batting for the visitors on 20 with Lucas Mowat on two.

The Saints, buoyed by the breakthroughs last weekend, will look to keep the Swans honest.

STRATFORD faces an uphill battle to make the finals if it loses to Longford at Stephenson Park.

The Redbacks resume on 4-33, needing another 106 runs to win.

The seventh-placed Redbacks are four points behind Sale in fourth. With Bundalaguah in front of RK and Sale in a position to defeat Boisdale-Briagolong, Stratford needs its batsmen to dig in to make sure it wins and stays in touch with the top four.

The pressure’s off the Lizards, with other teams unlikely to take second spot off them.

COLLEGIANS will begin day two of its match against Maffra 48 runs ahead.

With six wickets in hand, Matt Foster will resume on 50 with Jayden Allison yet to score. College still has Stuart Anderson and Mark Nicholls to bat.

A win should be enough to secure Collegians the minor premiership, with fifth-placed Maffra needing early breakthroughs on Saturday to keep pace with other finals contenders.