The Navy Cricket Team got off to a winning start against the Army Cricket Team in Canberra on Sunday morning, making a good start to the National Services T20 Championships having already won the National 50-Over Carnival last week.
Army won the toss and put Navy in to bat first. Navy got off to a solid start despite losing a couple of early wickets, Able Seaman Kane Duncan scored 41 runs, supported by Leading Seaman Chris Cox with 37, in a third wicket partnership of 65.
Navy ended up with 133 runs, which was going to be difficult to defend on a big ground. Some excellent and disciplined bowling and good ground-fielding contained the Army to only 112 for the loss of 9 wickets, with only six boundaries scored and no sixes.
Pick of the bowlers were Able Seaman Chris Thompson with two wickets for 16 runs and Warrant Officer Gary Fuss with two wickets for 23 runs.
On Sunday afternoon, Navy took to the field again against the RAAF Cricket Team, after again losing the toss. The morning game had taken its toll and a tired Navy side were put to the sword by some ruthless RAAF batting.
RAAF ended up with 181 for the loss of only 4 wickets. However, Navy set about the run chase well, with Able Seaman Kane Duncan once again scoring 41 runs and wicketkeeper/batsman Petty Officer Luke Grimmond chipping in with a quick-fire 27.
In the end, the RAAF’s fielding and bowling proved to be disciplined and Navy ended up with a final score of 154 for 8 wickets.
On the same day, Lieutenant Commander Jen Macklin was the only representative in the Women’s ‘Two Blues’ team, who played the Army in two T20 games. She was presented the first Navy Women’s Baggy Blue cap by President of Navy Cricket, Warrant Officer Gary Fuss while the Navy men’s squad watched on. She said that she was honoured to be part of Navy Cricket and hoped this would be the first of many women’s caps to be presented in the coming years.
On Monday, the Army’s men’s side beat the RAAF convincingly to book a place in the T20 final with Navy, because the two teams had the greatest run rates.
“We have a great opportunity to make service cricketing history by winning this final and becoming the first service to hold both the 50-over and T20 titles in the same year,” said LCDR Guy Lewis, Coach of the Navy team.
“However, we will need our great Navy spirit and to play to our full potential to overcome this gutsy Army side,” he said.