The prospect of moving as high as second on the Newcastle District Cricket Association ladder won’t waver the approach of Toronto according to captain Paul Toole.
The fifth-placed Kookaburras are five wickets and a run chase away from an outright victory against Cardiff-Boolaroo heading into day two of the round eight fixture at Ron Hill Oval on Saturday.
Cardiff resume their second innings at 5-50 with a lead of 34 runs after last weekend being bundled out for 94 and Toronto declaring at 3-110.
And with 90 overs remaining last season’s semi-finalists have a big chance to secure a maximum 10 competition points, which, depending on other results, could see the Kookaburras (27) leapfrog into the top four over Hamilton-Wickham (35), University (33) and, or, Merewether (30).
At the very least Toronto collect six points for their first-innings victory and it follows a 14-point gain on the previous Tom Locker Cup double header weekend, catapulting them back into contention from the bottom half of the overall standings in the space of three matches.
“That’s all true but it’s a long season,” Toole said.
“Everyone plays each other a few times and it evens itself out. We just have to make sure our consistency is there.
“It’s not really about the points, it’s more about the way we are playing.
“We’re trying to really focus on doing the little things right and if we do the little things right everything else will look after itself. Points are a bonus, we just want to get our cricket right.”
All eight bowlers used by Toronto on Saturday claimed at least one victim each while wicketkeeper Corey Loveday, who was called up late to replace regular gloveman Jeremy Ford (finger), featured in the first three dismissals. Andrew Jeffrey (hamstring) remains hampered by injuries in his comeback season while the return of all-rounder Adrian Chad from England and South Australia has started to gain some momentum.
Elsewhere and despite clocking up 8(dec)-362 and having Wallsend 1-14 in reply Merewether are wary of the home side’s successful run chase back in 2011-2012 when they reeled in 6-418 with three wickets and four overs to spare.
University (2-77) need 141 against Wests (217) at No.1 Sportsground with eight wickets in hand while Hamilton-Wickham (4-96) require a further 103 with four men down against Charlestown (198) at Passmore Oval. Belmont (374) resume in a strong position away against Waratah-Mayfield (1-5) while Stockton-Raymond Terrace (9(dec)-237) and Newcastle City (1-6) are set to fight it out at Lynn Oval.
Play gets underway at 11am.
Meanwhile, Merewether and Charlestown will go head-to-head for the Gilmour Cup at Townson Oval on Wednesday (4.30pm) after both sides successfully won through to the inaugural Newcastle district masters Twenty20 final.
AROUND THE GROUNDS
*Wallsend Oval – Merewether 8(dec)-362 v Wallsend 1-14
*Ron Hill Oval – Cardiff-Boolaroo 94 & 5-50 v Toronto 3(dec)-110
*Passmore Oval – Charlestown 198 v Hamilton-Wickham 4-96
*Lynn Oval – Stockton-Raymond Terrace 9(dec)-237 v Newcastle City 1-6
*Waratah Oval – Belmont 374 v Waratah-Mayfield 1-5
*No.1 Sportsground – Wests 217 v University 2-77
Newcastle City 20
Stockton-Raymond Terrace 13