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Rathkeale take centre stage

By Gary Caffell

Rathkeale College have the chance to at least challenge the balance of power in Wairarapa Cricket’s Umpire’s Cup competition when they host Lansdowne tomorrow.

While the general feeling around the cricket fraternity is that Lansdowne and Greytown will eventually contest the final of this competition Rathkeale will at least keep matters interesting in that regard if they can lower the colours of Lansdowne on this occasion.

Right now the students sit third on the points table with 13 points while Lansdowne are second with 20, just one point behind Greytown.

Further back are Red Star on 7 and Wairarapa College on 2.

Worth noting too is that Lansdowne and Wairarapa College are still to play their catch-up game so Lansdowne’s position is probably a good deal better than it looks.

Anybody who believes Rathkeale don’t have the depth of talent to fully extend Lansdowne only need to study the last clash between these two sides to think again.

That went right down to the wire with Lansdowne winning by a solitary run.

Two Rathkeale players who will be keen to make an impact are Jack Forrester and Kelsey Fahey, both of whom were named in the Wairarapa team for their washed-out Furlong Cup match with Manawatu last weekend and will be wanting to prove they should be retained for coming games in that competition.

Both are competent batsmen while Fahey will also have a big job to do as their main strike bowler.

In the other Umpire’s Cup match tomorrow, Red Star will do battle with Wairarapa College at Queen Elizabeth Park oval in Masterton and while Red Star will start favourite it wouldn’t surprise if the result went the other way.

In Brad Griffith, the Wakeling brothers and Michael Brewster the college side have players with loads of natural ability and if they fire anything could happen.

Umpire’s Cup action continues on Sunday with Greytown set to confront Lansdowne at Greytown.

These two sides met a fortnight back with Lansdowne running out very comfortable winners but Greytown are clearly a better side than that.

If they are anywhere near full strength a close finish is very much on the cards.

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