Kilmore has a fighting chance of securing a result against top three side Avenel in the Seymour District Cricket Association.
After a strong first innings with the bat, starving Avenel’s bowling attack of wicket-taking opportunities, the bottom ranked side is in with a shot of claiming just its third win of the season.
Shane Topham was a shining light with the willow, bashing his way to 78, and with Marcus Davern’s help (39), the pair brought Kilmore’s score to a defendable 10/196 off 61 overs.
That left Avenel to see out the remaining 14 overs in the day.
And they would have, if it were not for Connor McLeod knocking over Avenel opener Kasey Duncan for one run.
Kilmore senior player Jacob Walton said it was one of the best first days the club had played this season.
‘‘We were in a bit of trouble early on with the bat but Shane Topham’s 79 was exactly what we needed,’’ he said.
‘‘I think (Topham and Davern) put on 80 runs between the two of them, then we were lucky enough to grab a wicket overnight.
‘‘On the second day we’ll be looking to bowl well and if we do then we can knock them over for a reasonable total.’’
The ball will no doubt be tossed to Josh Buttler and McLeod to make the most of a green pitch, with the hopes of early wickets on day two.
‘‘We still have our eyes set on finals, but we need results in all three remaining weekends, so this would be a huge one for us.
‘‘We’ve been in winning positions in most games this year. We have a young side and have been unlucky in some others.
‘‘We have Tallarook next and although they’re top, we can beat them.’’
In other SDCA A-grade matches, Broadford racked up 254 runs, which included an Ashley Wood century (102) and tail ender Nathan Woods’ 49 not out.
The pick of the Yea bowlers were Andrew Chisholm (3/67) and Marc Steiner (3/82).
Top-of-the-table Tallarook played day one against fifth-placed Eastern Hill, electing to bat, and putting together a classy 9/299.
Leigh Irving (63) and Kalon Winnell (54) top scored with the bat, while Dallas Bergowicz was chief destroyer with the ball, claiming figures of 4/41 off his 13 overs.
In B grade action, Broadford defeated Avenel; Eastern Hill defeated Tallarook; Yea defeated Seymour; Pyalong defeated Kilmore; and Royals defeated Alexandra.
In C grade action, Royals defeated Eastern Hill; Broadford Red defeated Puckapunyal Wanderers; Pyalong defeated Puckapunyal Nomads; Alexandra defeated Broadford Black; and Seymour defeated Kilmore.