St George’s first innings result over Sydney University at University Oval on Saturday put the Students in a must-win situation in the last three competition rounds if they are to defend the First Grade Belvidere Cup.

The loss relegated Sydney University to 12th on the competition ladder, seven points adrift of six-placed Penrith.

Unbeaten Manly-Warringah have led the competition from the outset and look likely minor premiers with 62 points in the bank. Bankstown (52), Eastern Suburbs (45), Randwick-Petersham (42), Mosman (42) and Penrith (41) make up the top six, with Campbelltown-Camden (36), Sutherland (36), Gordon (34), and St George (31) sitting ahead of Sydney University (30).

The Students meet second-placed Bankstown in a two-day match at Joe McAleer Oval this Saturday and Sunday, followed by limited overs matches against last-placed Western Suburbs at University No.1 Oval on Saturday, February 28, and sixth-place Penrith at Howell Oval on Saturday, March 14. Outright points against Bankstown would seem to be the first priority.

The qualifying finals between the top six teams will be played on March 21 and 22, with the semi-finals on March 28 and 29, and the final on April 4, 5 and 6.

While Sydney University Firsts walk the razor’s edge, Second Grade are well-placed to defend their 2013-14 title, with the first innings win over St George at Hurstville Oval keeping their unbeaten season intact and the minor premiership beckoning.

Sydney University head the Second Grade competition on 63 points, with Northern District (47), Manly-Warringah (42), Eastern Suburbs (42), Blacktown (42) and Hawksesbury (40) making up the top six.

Sydney University Thirds are seventh on the ladder, just a point off a preliminary finals berth. Penrith head the Third Grade competition on 60 points, with Eastern Suburbs (57), Manly-Warringah (50), Hawkesbury (5), Sutherland (48) and Gordon (43) ahead of Sydney University (42).

Sydney University Fourths are well established in the top six and on target for a finals berth. Manly-Warringah head the ladder on 61 points, with Sydney (52), Sydney University (48), Penrith (48), Northern District (44) and St George (43) making up the top six.

As with First Grade, Sydney University Fifths are still a chance of grabbing a finals berth. Penrith head the Fifth Grade ladder on 54 points, with Mosman (54), Northern District (50), Manly-Warringah (49), Randwick-Petersham (47) and St George (42) making up the top six, and Parramatta (41) and Sydney University (38) harboring hopes.

The sought-after Club Championship is going down to the wire, with Manly-Warringah heading the way on 1256 points, ahead of Sydney University (1057), Penrith (1047) and Eastern Suburbs (1032).

Meanwhile, Universities remain undefeated in the women’s First Grade competition, with a six wicket result in a low-scoring match against Northern District at David Phillips North Oval at the weekend.

Universities rattled up 4-91 off 15.1 overs after dismissing the visitors for 93 in 23 overs. Rachel Hayne (26 not out) and Georgia Redmayne (25) led the way for Universities with the bat, while Maisy Gibson (3-0) and Kate Owen (4-19) improved their bowling averages with telling spells.



Sydney Men’s Grade Cricket competition – Round 12 (Two-day matches)

First Grade: St George 7-237 off 79.4 overs (Trent Copeland 67 not out, Steven Cazzulino 50, Stewart McCabe 41, Simon Chu 41: Tim Ley 4-60, Jonte Pattison 2-42) d Sydney University 233 off 87.5 overs (Jonte Pattison 82, Ben Trevor-Jones 57, Greg Mail 22; Eric Denhartog 5-50) at Sydney University No.1 Oval. Toss: St George. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: St George 6, Sydney University 0.

Second Grade: Sydney University 176 off 70.5 overs (Tom Kierath 37, James Larkin 34, Darius Visser 31, Jack Hill 30; Luke Stanton 4-27, Peter Francis 2-39) and 0-99 off 25 overs (Ben Larkin 63 not out, 34 not out) d St George 146 off 64.2 overs (Brent Atherton 29, Chris MacDougall 26; Josh Toyer 5-27, Jim Ryan 2-33, Dugald Holloway 2-40) stumps at Hurstville Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Sydney University 6, St George 0.

Third Grade: Sydney University 8(dec)-206 (Ash Cowan 62, Jack Maddocks 37, Henry Clark 32, Lewis McMahon 23 not out) d St George, 162 off 77 overs (no details posted) at Alan Davidson Oval. Toss: St George. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Sydney University 6, St George 0.

Fourth Grade:  St George 224 off 77.4 overs (Andrew Pandelis 100, Blake Newport 36; Jonathon Dobson 3-25, William Clayton 2-28) d Sydney University 168 off 58.2 overs (Hayden Kerr 49, Alasdair Grant 38, Kieran Tate 25, Matthew Skinner 24; Andrew Pandelis 3-54, Nathan Anderson 2-26) at Harold Fraser Reserve.  Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: St George. Points: St George 6, Sydney University 0.

Fifth Grade:  St George 3-202 off 65 overs (Joshua Sullivan 52, Michael Greene 48, Jackson Shaw 43; Lachlan Carfax 1-16) d Sydney University 198 off 68.5 overs (Alex Mihalyka 48, Hugh Kermond 38, Douglas Rogers 38; Andrew Marston 4-59) at St Paul’s College Oval. Toss: St George. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: St George 6, Sydney University 0.

Metropolitan Cup – Round 12 (Two-day match)

Penrith 8-203 (Jake Edgecumbe 93, Lindsay Smith 43 not out; Bradley Burns 2-5) d Sydney University 164 off 59.1 overs (Cameron New 48, Andrew Wilkinson 31, Bradley Burns 31; Jake Edgecumbe 3-16) at Rance Oval. Toss: Penrith. Batted first:  Sydney University. Points: Penrith 6, Sydney University 0.

Sydney Women’s Grade Cricket competition – Round 7 (Limited Overs matches)

First Grade: Universities 4-94 off 15.1 overs (Rachael Haynes 26 not out, Georgia Redmayne 25; Sharon Dass 2-27) d Northern District 93 off 23.5 overs (Sarah Burns 25; Maisy Gibson 3-0, Kate Owen 4-19) by six wickets at David Phillips North Oval. Toss: Universities. Batted first: Northern District. Points: Universities 6, Northern District 0.