STAND-in Wangaratta Magpies skipper Zac Guilfoyle has blamed a lack of effort for his side’s disappointing opening day against arch rival Rovers United.
The Magpies are chasing 224 in their round 4 home clash at Norm Minns Oval today after having Rovers in trouble at 3-66 last week before letting them off the hook.
Guilfoyle, who is in charge of the side in the absence of Simon Patterson, said the Pies couldn’t afford concentration lapses in the run chase as the proud club searches for just its second win of the season.
“In the past you couldn’t fault our effort but at times I felt the effort wasn’t there during certain periods of the day,” the bowling all-rounder said.
“When they formed a couple of good partnerships we needed to lift in intensity and we didn’t do that.
“The bowling figures weren’t bad but there weren’t enough balls that were going to challenge the batsmen.”
A dogged half-century from Jeremy Ackroyd (71) in his first match for the season helped Rovers past 200, while Adrian Squires (29), Josh Schonafinger (25) and captain Jacob Schonafinger (22) played important cameo roles.
Ackroyd and Squires put on 83 for the fourth wicket in a telling partnership.
“When we started the day we thought that score was a 200 wicket,” said Guilfoyle, who led the way for his side with 4-38 off 16.3 overs.
“If you post 200 you are a good chance of winning.
“Hats off to Rovers, they batted well.
“Hopefully the top six or seven guys can get among the runs.”
If they don’t get off to a good start today, the Pies could find themselves starring down the barrel of their second defeat
Patterson (60) is the club’s leading run-scorer, with Rhett Mitchell next best with 41.
Guilfoyle, who is one of only a handful of experienced players in the Magpies side, said finals would be a bonus this season.
“With the improvement we’ve got in the guys we will be looking to shape the outcome of who plays in the finals,” Guilfoyle said.
“We can’t look too far ahead of ourselves, there’s still a lot of development to come.”