Giants Blue are through to Intercity Premier Two final after a comfortable 6-0 win over Johnsonville Swingers at South Park on Saturday.
The Masterton club were top qualifiers and they asserted dominance from the start, taking advantage of some slack Johnsonville fielding to score four runs in the first inning.
Giants stalwart Chris Feary watched the game and said the Blues’ fast start was a combination of good hitting and errors in the field.
“In the first couple of innings, the fielding really let the Johnsonville outfit down; it was
very ordinary,” Feary said.
“Infield hits that you would expect to be gobbled up and on easy plays, mistakes were made. They just made a few little mistakes here and there each inning and Giants just took full advantage with their speed around the bases.”
Feary said that when Johnsonville batted, they struggled against the pitching of Blues player-coach Justin ‘Chunky’ Karaitiana, and when they did connect, there were good infield plays by the likes of Tarquin Karaitiana, and good catches by the Blues fielders.
Giants Blue will come up against surprise finalists Demons in this Saturday’s decider, likely to be played at Hataitai Park.
Demons, who finished fourth in the regular season, defeated Poneke Kilbirnie Red 3-1, and the second seeds Cardinals 4-2 to qualify for the final.
The Giants women’s frustrating season is over after an eight-run loss to Stokes Valley in their semifinal at South Park on Saturday.
The game was just the fourth game for Giants since the new year, with three of their seven scheduled games cancelled or won by default. It was also the first time the two teams had met, with both previous clashes cancelled.
Giants took a 2-0 lead in the first inning, only for Stokes Valley to reply with four runs. The visitors then controlled the game to run out comfortable winners.
Feary said the women were disappointed with the loss, but the team should be proud of their efforts.
“Every year they’ve improved. Last year they made the top five and this year they made the major semifinal, so great work by them, but they just needed that one little step up to make the final,” Feary said.