Top order dominates for Redbacks

George GoodwinBunbury Herald

Hay Park duo Kris Miller and skipper Jono Whitney scored magnificent half centuries to spearhead the Redbacks to a five-wicket victory against Dalyellup Beach on Saturday.

Dalyellup skipper Ben Cooper won the toss and elected to bat at Dalyellup College, but they put up a shaky start of 4/59.

Opener Ben Lagana was bowled by Chris Waddingham for nine runs, Matt Fink was dismissed by Whitney for a duck and in-form wicketkeeper Paul Jones was caught by Miller off the bowling of Reon Tither in a collapse of the top order.

When Tim Cooper was run out for 29 by a smart bit of fielding from Mark Steven, it looked as if Dalyellup’s innings would be finished early.

But the Settlers’ middle order dug in and fought hard to get them to a respectable 6/173 off their 50 overs thanks to knocks by Scott Harber (37), Dan Lomax (37), Corey Fagan (30 not out) and Liam Renton (20 not out).

Miller opened the batting and after losing partner Dave Taylor for a duck and first drop Steve Florance early, he kicked into gear and blasted four boundaries and four sixes in a better than a run a ball 48 to set the Redbacks on their way before he was bowled by Harber.

The Redbacks fangs sank deeper into the Settlers with skipper Whitney’s superb undefeated 75 finished off with a flurry of four sixes off the last two overs faced, backed by Tom Scott.

Ryan Leybourne then put the icing the cake for the fifth-placed Redbacks.

The win keeps the reigning premiers’ hopes of making the finals alive.

The Redbacks must defeat Marist this weekend in their final home-and-away fixture.

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