After more than a decade as runners up Gordon 3rd Grade have claimed top honours in the McDonald’s Women’s Premier Cricket 3rd Grade Limited Overs competition, defeating Manly-Warringah in an electric limited overs grand final by 47 runs at Forsythe Park.
After winning the toss, Gordon elected to bat and despite some tight bowling from the Manly side they were able to get off to a steady start with an opening partnership of 41. Some brilliant pieces of fielding from the visitors saw two run outs which triggered a minor collapse for the Gordon team as they slumped to 4-78. This brought the Gordon Captain, Kristen Dorsch, to the crease who changed the momentum of the innings with a brilliant display of power hitting. Dorsch hit six fours and three sixes as she reached the mandatory retirement score of 50 off just 24 balls. Dorsch was well supported by Lisa Chan (31) and Di Olson (36) as Gordon accelerated in the latter overs to reach 5/214 off their 40 overs. The Manly bowlers worked hard with Sallie Molyneux the best of the bowlers with figures of 2/49.
Despite the imposing total, Manly-Warringah remained confident they could chase the runs down on the small Forsythe Park ground. A confident start from the Manly openers was broken with the score on 29 and much like the Gordon first innings a flurry of wickets followed as they fell to 5/74. Middle order contributions from Abby Taylor (30), Charlotte Ambler (29no) and Renee Hough (20) kept their side with a chance however regular wickets kept the required run rate out of reach. Manly-Warringah were eventually dismissed for 167 in the 39th over. Di Olson, in her first season of cricket, was the chief destroyer with the ball finishing with figures of 3/21. She was well supported by spinner Jane Warrilow (2/36) and Captain Dorsch (2/17).
Gordon President and Third Grade player was full of praise for her side. Henry said "March 2009 was the last limited overs premiership Gordon 3rds won on the field despite being in countless finals since then." (Gordon won the 2018/19 Premiership due to a washout.) "Amazing team effort with every single player contributing to the win. Fabulous bunch of girls to play with."
Kristen Dorsch, in her first full season as 3rd Grade Captain, was named the Player of the Final. Dorsch commented "There were a few anxious moments but the work we put in meant we were able to push through those as a strong team. The match was easily the best game of the season. It was a true contest that was went right to the last few overs. Congratulations to Manly-Warringah for a fabulous performance in their first final. The match was played in a fabulous spirit.”
Grand Final (Saturday 13th March 2021);
Gordon 5/214cc (K Dorsch 50* D Olson 36 L Chan 31 S Molyneux 2/49) def Manly-Warringah 167 (A Taylor 30 C Ambler 29* D Olson 3/21 J Warrilow 2/36 K Dorsch 2/17)
Umpires: Scott Fraser & Kevin McFarlane