Victoria has won the men’s Grand Final at the 2017 National Indigenous Cricket Championships (NICC), defeating New South Wales by 18 runs and in the process securing the NICC men’s title for the first time.
Victoria won the toss and elected to bat first, but an impressive run out in the second over removed Daniel Mock (2) to give New South Wales the early momentum. Djali Bloomfield (1/34) and Ben Patterson (2/47) then combined for a destructive bowling spell that left Victoria reeling at 5/74 in the 21st over.
With their backs against the wall, Victorians Clayton McCartney and Nick Boland came together at the crease to mount a comeback, putting on a 73-run partnership before Boland was dismissed for 21. McCartney’s innings continued in 51-run partnership with Joshua Eaton (18) before he was finally dismissed by Ben Mitchell (2/43) for 114 from 109 balls, the first century of the 2017 NICC, with his side at 7/198 at the end of the 45th over. A handy run a ball effort late in the innings from Wade King (13*) helped Victoria reach 8/228.
The New South Wales run chase was initially hampered by a loss of top order wickets, with Nick Boland (3/44) claiming the key wickets of Damien Duroux (21) and Brendan Smith (4) to have New South Wales at 3/65 in the 14th over.
Nathan Price was then joined at the crease by Jonte Pattison (30 off 49 balls) and the pair proceeded to build a carefully crafted 64-run partnership that shifted the momentum back in favour of New South Wales. The partnership was broken by Tom Collett (3/29) who claimed Pattison’s wicket before also dismissing Harrison Kelly (3) and Marty Jeffrey (1) shortly thereafter. Price’s partnerships with Ben Mitchell (19 off 26) and Ben Patterson (20 off 18) helped to keep New South Wales in with a chance of chasing down the target but the New South Wales captain’s was the last wicket to fall, caught in the deep by Daniel Mock for 78 off the bowling of Boland.
The title win was the first for a Victorian men’s team at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships and the significance of the moment was not lost on Victorian captain Ben Abbatangelo when he spoke after the match.
“There have been a lot of people that have shared the experience on the journey and I think we are just really fortunate to be reaping the rewards at the end of it and I think as a program and as a state we just want to remember what that feeling feels like.
“It means the world to everyone that’s here wearing the Big V. We put grade cricket aside, we put a lot of things aside, work aside to be here and represent our state and represent ourselves so it means everything to us.”
Victoria’s win in the men’s Grand Final comes after New South Wales defeated Queensland in the NICC women’s Grand Final early today.
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