By Tom Watson
Monbulk Cricket Club’s first side fell just short in its top-of-the-table clash with Lysterfield at Silvan on the weekend.
Set 285 to win off 80 overs, Monbulk started well, getting to 35 before the first wicket fell.
Steady partnerships followed to have the game evenly poised at 2/100 at tea.
After the break it was Jason Fraser (36) and Braden Taeuber (88) who ensured that the Hawks were within striking distance.
Unfortunately both went out in the 71st over, with 70 still to get, and the chase struggled from there. After the 80 overs, Monbulk finished on 8/245.
Braden Taeuber put in a patient, mature innings.
The twos were set for a big chase, needing 377 to topple Knox Boronia Churches.
A few big partnerships were going to be required to get the runs, and there were several scores of note.
However, Monbulk lacked a big score.
Brian Martin (36), Keelan Storey (54), Tom Berman (42) and Dylan Goldberg (42) all got starts but failed to go on and make it count.
Finishing on 10/262 was a fair effort and showed what several partnerships could do.
The thirds wrapped up a comprehensive outright win against South Belgrave.
Monbulk finished with 7/170 with Jason Simmonds (59) and Liam Mackin (30) starting well.
From there, Michael Adams (26*) and Chris Defina (22) blasted a total.
Monbulk bowled South Belgrave out twice, for 67 and 74.
Wickets were shared in the innings, with Craig Heppell (five for the match) and Chris Defina (four for the match) in the wickets.
The fours struggled in the second day of their match.
Set 311 runs to win by Upwey, with Ben Horlock taking 4/46, Monbulk failed to make a push for victory.
Horlock again was the shining light, making 42 as the Hawks finished on 10/101.
Juniors were also back this week with the under-12s, 14s and 16s playing.
The under-16s had an excellent victory, with Nick Taylor (38) and Jai Spencer (20) getting the Hawks to 7/118.
Upper Ferntree Gully could on manage 10/55, with Jett Bolton taking 3/7 and Nick Taylor 3/6.
The under-14s won a close game against Eildon Park, making 7/94 (Josh Davis 16, Bon Sullivan 12). Eildon Park was restricted to 7/92, with Kale Dharmadasa and Ethan Blenkiron taking 1/4.
The under-12s had a tough day on the field, making 4/77 (Charlie Hooper 24*), while Eildon Park easily passed them at 1/127 (Rylan Kay 1/11).