Batting brigade ready to step up

RUTHERGLEN United star Sam Stewart has backed his side’s spluttering batting line-up to produce the goods in tonight’s WDCA one-day grand final against Whorouly-Gapsted.

The Redlegs must stop their mini form slump with the bat to beat the Maroons under lights at the Norm Minns Oval.

Alarmingly, in the past game-and-a-half the Redlegs have lost 14-121 but Stewart said the slump would only be temporary.

Ladder leader Rutherglen will resume its two-dayer at Yarrawonga tomorrow in trouble at 4-34, chasing the Lakers’ 183.

“Everyone has their off days,” Stewart, 21, said.

“It was tough conditions at Yarra with 10-15 overs left.

“A few blokes were given opportunities and didn’t take them, myself included.

“We’ve still got a few recognised batsmen to come.”

Rutherglen will be boosted by the return of Russell Fulton, Trent Lappin and Warwick Thompson, while the Maroons will replace injured quick James Neary (knee) with Glenn Cousins.

Whorouly captain Ross Cavill said his side had nothing to lose.

“It was a bit of a surprise to make it but everything fell into place and we had a couple of big wins so we just sneaked in,” he said.

“It’s good for the club and hopefully a few people come for a watch.”

The Redlegs finished eighth on the one-day ladder last season and ninth on the two-day table, while the Maroons didn’t have an A-grade side.

Stewart said both clubs should be proud of making the grand final after finishing first and second on the one-day ladder, respectively.

“It’s a good story,” he said.

“For the two of us to be playing off in a one-day final is exciting and good for cricket.”