Two lots of silverware are coming back to the Albert Ground after the MCC’s Women’s Premier Second and Third XI sides took out their respective Premierships on Sunday.The Women’s Premier Firsts will look to emulate their feats when they play off in their own Grand Final this Sunday, having defeated Box Hill in the semi-final yesterday.
The prospect of a clean sweep of flags is an exciting one and it would be a fitting way to celebrate the tenth season of Women’s cricket at the MCC.
The Second XI made it back-to-back Premierships, while it was vindication complete for the Third XI, who bowed out in the semi-finals of last season. They overcame strong favourites Geelong in the decider.
It rounded out the perfect day and week for Melbourne, who claimed the Women’s Club Championship for a second straight year. The First XI produced a nine-wicket win that was set-up by an even bowling performance and 60 not out from Rhiann O’Donnell.
For the Second XI, Player of the Final Lucy Page starred with the ball and then the bat as the Demons romped to a seven-wicket win at Beaumaris.
MCC Women's Second XI
Page snared 4/12 from eight overs to restrict Box Hill to 113, before hitting a composed 22 not out from 30 deliveries. Fittingly, it was veteran skipper Brea Sutton – who has guided her young charges beautifully all season – who struck the winning runs.
Emerging quick Indigo Noble supported with the ball with figures of 2/17 (eight overs), while Mia Perrin (27 from 29 balls) and Jess Couser (24 from 43) chipped in with the bat to comfortably haul in the target.
For the Premier Thirds, an explosive bowling display from Melbourne stifled a Geelong innings that never got going, with the latter all-out for 120 inside their allotted 39 overs in a rain-affected match.
Melbourne had earlier set a modest 6/142 for Geelong to chase, largely thanks to Kamya Mishra who anchored the innings with a composed 32 not out from 77 balls.
Opener Jessica Bohn (21 from 42) and Parry Jenkins (25 from 35 balls) made starts, but it was Mishra who shone brightest as wickets fell around her.
But any concerns of defending a low total were put to bed for Melbourne, as Jenkins and captain Yolanne Carvalho (both 3/19) inflicted the most damage on Geelong.
Sahana Tarini also chipped in with two wickets for just six runs from eight overs as Melbourne’s other multiple wicket-taker.
Geelong at one stage were stuttering at 7/68 before some lower-order contributions sent some small nerves through the Melbourne camp. Ultimately they would fall 22 runs short to hand the Demons the Premiership.
MCC Chairman of Premier Cricket, Andrew Kent said the results were the cherry on top for the Premier Women’s Cricket program.
MCC Women's Third XI
“It’s a wonderful achievement by our Seconds and our Thirds, and backed up by our First XI who will go into next weekend’s Grand Final full of confidence,” Kent said.
“We’re extremely proud of all of our players who play the game with a fantastic competitiveness and a great spirit.
“For our Seconds, to go back-to-back is a wonderful achievement and a great sign of depth and these players are working hard to play at the highest level possible. Brea Sutton has again been superb at the helm.
“Our Thirds players have also come on in leaps and bounds and they showed great character and belief in beating a team that had been ladder leaders all season.
“The performances of all three sides are a reflection of the dedication and skill of our coaches in Teagan Parker, Graeme Lay, Karen Rolton, Will O’Brien and Rob Templeton.
“Hopefully we can get behind our First XI this coming weekend and achieve an historic first with three flags.”
The Melbourne Premier Women’s First XI will likely face Carlton, who were the higher-ranked club after their semi-final against Ringwood was washed out.
The Grand Final will be played on Sunday March 13 at the Albert Cricket Ground.