MORTLAKE reaffirmed its powerhouse status with another grand final victory on Sunday.
This time it was in South West Cricket’s Twenty20 competition, the Fonterra Cup, with the Cats scoring a 20 run victory to progress to the Sungold Cup finals for the second time in three years.
Victorious Mortlake skipper Tyler Schafer said the win had put the Cats on the path to potentially achieve further success.
“Our goal is to win the Sungold Cup so now we’ve put ourselves in the best possible position to do that,” he said.
“It’s pleasing. Our younger fellas are playing really well and we’re ticking all the right boxes.”
The Cats had an eventful path to the final, recording a narrow two run victory over Camperdown before they dismantled Terang by nine wickets in the semi-final to book their spot in the decider.
Schafer said the Cats “definitely haven’t played our best cricket yet” but admitted he was happy with their form over the weekend.
“I think that is still to come but look out when we do I think,” he said.
“It’s just little things mainly in the field (that need improving) and all we have to do is get to training and work on it.
“The skills are all there but the form sort of goes out the window in Twenty20 cricket doesn’t it?
“But I’m happy with our form, we probably played our best game just then (Sunday). It’s put us in good stead.”
The final between the Cats and the Knights was a tight affair from the outset, with Todd Lamont (31) and Lachie Wareham (23) top scoring as Cobden restricted Mortlake to 119 in the first innings.
The Knights then made a fast start to the run chase, going at a little better than a run a ball before the Cats wrested momentum back between overs six to 10.
Angus Uwland (22) and Matt Smalley-Harris (27) both showed resistance at the crease but could not stop the momentum swinging back in Mortlake’s favour.
The change saw Mortlake pile the pressure on the Knights’ batsmen, with Cobden’s wickets falling regularly as the run rate crept higher.
Eventually they entered the final over with one wicket in hand and needing 28 to win but a run out on the second ball finally sealed Mortlake’s impending win.
“I think they were 1/30 after five and then 2/40 something after 10,” Schafer said.
“Jack (Lehmann) and Todd Robertson really tightened it up and Jack finished with three for stuff all off his four.
“That was the main thing, just real tight bowling and not giving any boundaries away.”
The Cats will now play in the Sungold Cup qualifiers this Sunday.
Schafer said his side would enter the tournament with confidence after the Fonterra Cup.
“I think we’ve nearly got a better side than when we won it so it’s in our sights that’s for sure,” he said.
“We want to win the whole thing.”