A timely century from Damien Mortimer at the weekend helped Sydney University book a berth in the final of the Sydney Men’s Premier Grade cricket competition and a chance to defend their 2016-17 title.
Batting at No.3, Mortimer cracked 120 in Sydney University’s two-day semi-final win over Sydney at University Oval.
His 206-ball occupation included 16 boundaries and included partnerships of 72 with opener Nick Larkin (48) and 157 with No.4 Ed Cowan (82).
It was Mortimer’s second century of the season – he scored an unbeaten 107 against Blacktown in Round 2 – and his fourth for the club. The century also took him to 1102 runs for the season (in the three formats) at the healthy average of 50.05.
Having won the toss and batted, the Students posted an imposing 431 before rolling Sydney for 127, with Matthew Rodgers’ 55 making up the bulk of the visitor’s total.
Tim Ley (4-30), Ben Joy (2-19), Devlin Malone (2-23) and Lawrence Neil-Smith (2-28) shared the spoils in the resounding first innings win.
The Students will meet Parramatta in the three-day Belvidere Cup showdown at Bankstown Memorial Oval on March 31 and April 1 and 2, with play scheduled to commence at 9.30am each day.
Sydney University will also be chasing the Third Grade title after the Students defeated Parramatta in a low-scoring semi-final at Petersham Oval at the weekend.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, Sydney University appeared to have made a bad call when they were all out for 141. Alisdair Grant (31), Ed Arnott (31) and Jack Lawson (26) contributed to the cause, while Jim Pike (4-57) and Michael Sullivan (3-22) made life difficult with the ball.
But Sam Wood entered the fray and collected 6-42 as Parramatta succumbed to be all out for 135 with Harrison King (41) and Liam O’Farrell (41) the best of the willow wielders.
Batting a second time, the Students were 5-124 at stumps, with Charles Litchfield contributing a useful 43 not out)
Sydney University will meet Sydney in the Third Grade season decider at Sydney University Oval on March 31 and April 1, with play scheduled to commence at 9.30am each day.
Sydney Premier Men’s Grade competition – Semi-finals (Two-day matches)
First Grade: Sydney University 431 off 123.5 overs (Damien Mortimer 120, Ed Cowan 82, Nick Larkin 48, Hayden Kerr 43, Liam Robertson 32; Nicholas Bills 5-119, Ryan Felsch 2-72) defeated Sydney 127 off 32 overs (Matthew Rodgers 55; Tim Ley 4-30, Ben Joy 2-19, Devlin Malone 2-23, Lawrence Neil-Smith 2-28) on the first innings at Sydney University Oval on Saturday and Sunday. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University.
In the other semi-final Parramatta drew with Campbelltown-Camden at Old Kings Oval.
Final: Sydney University versus Parramatta at Bankstown Memorial Oval on March 31 and April 1 and 2, with play commencing at 9.30am.
Third Grade: Sydney University 141 off 62.3 overs (Alisdair Grant 31, Ed Arnott 31, Jack Lawson 26; Jim Pike 4-57, Michael Sullivan 3-22) and 5-124 off 50 overs (Charles Litchfield 43 not out, Ash Cowan 21; Matthew Giumelli 2-30) defeated Parramatta 135 off 63.2 overs (Harrison King 41, Liam O’Farrell 41; Sam Wood 6-42, Aidan Peek 2-11) on the first innings at Petersham Oval on Saturday and Sunday. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University.
In the other semi-final Sydney defeated Eastern Suburbs on the first innings at Drummoyne Oval.
Final: Sydney University versus Sydney at Sydney University Oval on March 31 and April 1, with play commencing at 9.30am.
Other finals: Northern District will meet Manly-Warringah in the Second Grade final at Mark Taylor Oval; Manly-Warringah will meet Western Suburbs in the Fourth Grade final at Manly Oval; and Parramatta will meet Manly-Warringah in the Fifth Grade final at Old Kings Oval.