Colts claim Country Shield

CRICKET Albury-Wodonga Colts yesterday took out the Country Shield in Cowra in their inaugural year in the competition.

Despite fielding an under-23 team, the Colts were too good for open-aged Armidale, bowling them out for 76 to record a 92-run victory.

Belvoir batsman-keeper Nat Sariman scored 45 in the Colts’ first innings of 168 to be named man-of-the-match.

The win continues a golden run for Border representative cricket this season.

On Friday CAW made it through to the final of the SCG Country Cup and the team is still alive in the Konica-Minolta Cup.

Coach Gerard Midson said the win was a sign the future of CAW was in safe hands.

“We said at the start of the tournament that these guys are the next generation of our SCG Country Cup side,” Midson said.

“It’s fantastic.

“It has been a really good band of blokes and it puts the pressure back on CAW’s open team to get the job done in the SCG Country Cup final.”

Being sent in after losing the toss didn’t faze the Border team.

Openers Ashley Bor-ella and Drew Cameron forged an important early partnership of 33 before Borella was caught for nine.

It brought the in-form Sariman to the crease.

He took little time finding his feet but had to steady the team when Cameron was out soon after his fellow opener.

Second drop David Farrell and Sariman took Colts to 2-95 before Farrell was bowled for 24.

Josh Warren-Marmo was the only other player to reach double figures (19) with CAW all out in the 48th over for 168.

“From what we’d heard 160 is about par at the ground so we were about par,” he said.

“We were pretty positive going in at the break.”

Armidale got off to the worst possible starts in its chase, losing one of its openers for a duck.

The team hit back to get to 1-30 before CAW struck again.

This time there was no coming back as Midson’s men steam-rolled Armidale for just 76 runs.

Josh Mallichan took 3-13 to be the pick of the bowlers.

He was well supported by Dave Tassell (2-16), Tom Cencic (2-17) and Robbie Hartnett (2-25).

“CAW said at the start of this season that we wanted to make the final of the SCG Country Cup, the Country Shield and the Konica-Minolta Cup so we’re on track,” Midson said.