By Richard Millott
Anyone needing clarification of The Basin’s credentials this season only needed to spend the afternoon at Fair Park, with the visiting Bears posting a mammoth total.
Taking first use of the facilities, The Basin started strong with Blake Walter (77) among the runs early.
Joel Robertson (54) and Chris Barry (50) provided support among the line-up that provided plenty of starts to reach 9/379 by day’s end.
For the Sharks, Mitchell Ley shone brightest by claiming 6/113, while Steve Devenish took 3/99 and will be a key player if the home team is to chase close to the target.
Knox Gardens had a profitable trip to Upwey, with the Falcons reaching 4/296. Every batsman of the day managed to start an innings over 30, with Jarrod Butcher the lead on 71.
Mitch Gregory (53*), Peter Dunlop (42), Brett Morrison (42), Joe Morsello (39) and Josh Gregory (33) all provided support in a well-rounded innings.
For the Tigers, Cameron Wheeler was consigned to reaching triple-figures, finishing at 3/113.
Josh Lindner was the thorn in the side of the King’s batsmen as Upper Ferntree Gully reached 183.
Lindner claimed 5/34 from his 18 overs, with batting resistance found for the Kings from Josh Presta (33*), Craig Bridle (30) and Daniel Giblin (30).
Ferntree Gully is in a competitive position in its match against Eildon Park.
Sent into bat first, the Panthers saw through the day, with Josh Dowling (67) reaching a half-century while Nathan Caton-Roberton hit 31 to help the Panthers to 180.
The Blues were potent with the ball, with Jake Evans (4/73) and Brad Reeve (3/16) as the multiple wicket-takers.
At Picketts Reserve, Tharanga Lakshita and Nicholas Bogar bowled superbly to limit Belgrave.
Lakshita claimed 5/31, with Bogar claiming 4/31 in support to keep the Magpies to 170.
In Decoite Shield, St Johns Tecoma already has first innings points in its match against Mountain Gate.
The Saints made quick work of the Gator attack, dismissing the home team for 81 with Luke Hands (4/30) and Jason Newman (3/19) the main culprits.
The Saints reached 7/156 at stumps, with Jake Sali (50) and Hands (34*) featuring.
For the Gators, Luke Turner led the way with 3/21, while Kevin Atacador took 3/29.
Olinda posted 302 against South Belgrave, with Tom Gelbert reaching 108. Adrian Willoughby (50) and Tom Stalder (48) provided great support for the home team in a competitive showing against South.
For South, Harley McDermott (3/72) was the pick of the bowling card.
Rowville put 152 on the board against neighbouring Lysterfield, with Alex Walker (39) and Brett Gatehouse (33) the leading Hawk batsmen despite Cameron Cosstick claiming 5/41 for the Beavers.
Up at Silvan, Monbulk reached 0/20 at the close of play having earlier dismissed Knox Gardens for 176.
Gerard Jongen reached 30, with the Hawks bowling duo Craig Broekhof (4/40) and Braden Taeuber (3/50) helping the home team to a good restricted total to target next Saturday.