The last day of play at the Under 15 Male National Championships proved to be action packed with NSW Magenta going through undefeated to win the trophy for 2019.
The final between NSW Magenta and Queensland at Kev Hackney Oval was everything a cricket lover could ask for. High scoring, twists and turns, not knowing who’s going to win until the last ball, it had everything.
Winning the toss and electing to bat NSW Magenta looked to continue where they left off in previous games. Opener Jonah Trope sustained his form with a well-made 50 before being dismissed by Queensland’s strike bowler Carter Pearson. With the score at 2/59 NSW Magenta’s captain Joel Davies strolled to the crease and produced one of the best innings of the Championships with a brilliant 103 including six boundaries and six maximums. Late order hitting from Farquharson (22) and Salzmann (29*) powered NSW Magenta’s total to 6/273. Pearson was the pick of the bowlers taking 3/49.
In reply, Queensland got off to a positive start with an opening stand of 37, which included Luke Davies (37) seeing off the new bowlers. Some early wickets from Sam Schembri-Green 3/47 helped stem the flow of runs, putting the pressure on right back on Queensland. A flurry of wickets left Queensland 6/84 desperately needing a batsman to stand up. Hugh Weibgen (45) provided stability before being dismissed by Max Becker with a ripping delivery. Shanuk Karandeniya 3/27 took some crucial wickets in the middle order to all but close out the chance of Queensland successfully chasing down the score. Ethan Hartley arrived at the crease all guns blazing and made close to a run-a-ball 73* though wasn’t quite enough to get over the line with Queensland falling short by 29 runs.
Third v fourth was played between ACT/NSW Country v Victoria Country seeing the boys south of the border with a resounding victory. ACT/NSW Country were bowled out for 67 in the 27th over with Devlin Webb the chief wicket taker with 4/15. In reply, Vic Country finished 2/68 with Cozens (27*) and Pastras-Jnr (20*) steering them home.
Vic Metro v South Australia played in the fifth v sixth final with Metro winning the toss and deciding to bat first. A half century by Harrish Kannan powered his teams total to a formidable 7/197 off 50 overs.
In reply, South Australia’s chase didn’t get off to a good start with regular wickets from Bostan 3/29 and Dhanoa 2/24 being crucial in Vic Metro’s victory. South Australia eventually were bowled out for 100 giving Vic Metro the win by 97 runs.
Seventh v eighth final was played between NSW Green and Western Australia. NSW Green posted 9/194 with Sam Konstas top scoring with 33*.
Western Australia, in reply, batted superbly in chasing down the target three wickets down. Opener Teague Wylie (73*) was instrumental in his team’s victory adding to his great form throughout the Championships.
The last game of the Championships saw Tasmania up against Northern Territory. Tasmania batted first and posted their best score of the tournament with 9/299 with late order hitting from Jake Dixon (90) and Jack Ross (78) allowing Tasmania to post such a daunting score for Northern Territory to chase.
In reply, Northern Territory were bowled out for 66. Wickets were shared between all the bowlers in an all-round team effort from Tasmania to post their first win of the Championships.
Following the Championships, 20 players were named in a Cricket Australia XI squad, which will be cut back to 13 following a camp at the Bupa National Cricket Centre in Queensland in July. The squad of 14 will compete at the Under 17 Male National Championships next summer.
Cricket Australia XI
Speaking at the conclusion of the Championships, Cricket Australia Pathway Manager, Graham Manou said:
"We were extremely pleased with the quality of the Championships, particularly considering this was the first year the U15 Male National Championships were run solely by ourselves.
"There were plenty of highlights, including two centuries Joel Davies, a five wicket haul (including a hat trick) from Carter Pearson’s and the overall performance from Player on the Tournament, Harrish Kaanan who averaged 40 with the bat.
"The next six months is an important time in the growth of these young men. We will continue to work with each State and Territory to support their development holistically while providing the best opportunity for each player to be selected in the final 14 for the U17 National Championships later in September/October."
Player of the Championships: Harrish Kannan (Vic Metro)
Leading Run Scorer: Joel Davies (NSW Magenta)
Leading Wicket Taker: Carter Pearson (Queensland) and Raheel Boston (Vic Metro)
Most Dismissals by a Fielder: Liam Blackford (Vic Country)