POMBORNEIT has returned to South West Cricket’s pinnacle, capping off a near perfect season with a stunning five wicket grand final victory on Saturday.
The Bulls put several years of heartbreak behind them as they brought down powerhouse Mortlake in stunning fashion at S.A. Wright Oval.
Skipper Grant Place said the club was thrilled to win its first premiership since 2008/09 but admitted the achievement was made sweeter after losing their previous two grand final outings to the Cats.
“Right from round one we’ve played good cricket, so it’s nice to finish off the year this way,” he said.
“It’s pleasing to beat such a quality side like Mortlake who have been the powerhouse of the competition for the past 10 years.
“It feels like a long time ago (that we won) the back-to-back flags and we’ve lost a couple in the last 10 years to Mortlake, so it’s nice to get one back on them.”
The Bulls’ win was set up by a commanding bowling performance, which put the Cats under pressure right from the first ball.
They suffocated Mortlake’s ability to score freely, taking regular wickets as they dismissed the Cats for 157.
Man of the match Clinton Place shone on the big stage, tearing through the Cats’ top order to finish with figures of 5/35 from 10 overs.
He was well supported by Steve O’Neill (2/32) and Brad Hillman (2/40) while Lahiru Fernando (1/36) also claimed a wicket.
In reply, the Bulls looked comfortable at the crease from the word go as Dave Murphy (30) and Grant Place (30) laid the foundations for their innings.
While Murphy and Place departed within 12 runs of each other, the Bulls were able to consolidate with ease as Tom Place (14) and Lahiru Fernando (36) continued to run down the target.
A mix up saw their partnership come to an end as Place was run-out but that saw Tharaka Sendanayake stride to the crease to join his countryman.
Together, they brought the Bulls even closer to victory and when Sendanayake crunched a big six over long on and hit the winning runs a few balls later, Pomborneit’s rise to top of the ladder was justified.
Mortlake skipper Todd Lamont was disappointed with the result, but conceded his side had been “outplayed on the day”.
“Pomborneit was the better team on the day,” he said.
“They bowled exceptionally well, I think they might have only put one catch down, but other than that their fielding was spot on and same with their batting.
“We were probably little bit off with the bat but even still getting 158 I thought we were a big chance but we just couldn’t get consecutive wickets.
“We’d get one (wicket) and then they’d get a partnership so we just didn’t get any momentum through the bowling innings but we just got outplayed in the end.”