The Burnie Hurricanes are the 2018-19 Cricket North West 1st Grade premiers, defeating Ulverstone by 99 runs on the first innings. The club secured its ninth premiership and second in three seasons thanks to an outstanding bowling display from its fast bowling unit and great pressure batting from Trevor Docking Medallist Nick Granger.
The Hurricanes began Day 3 on 0-69 in its second innings, an overall lead of 168. The Black Caps were keen for early wickets to give themselves some hope of an outright win, but openers Nick Granger and Brodie Hayes held firm. The pair guided the ladder ladders to 0/114, with Hayes showing exceptional powers of concentration to reach 30 not out from 186 balls. Granger played with a little bit more freedom, and the experienced left-hander made a fine 80 not out from 188 balls, striking nine boundaries in his exceptional innings.
With the Hurricanes leading by 213 runs with all 10 wickets in hand, Ulverstone skipper Josh Walmsley made the tough decision to concede defeat at the end of the first session. This prompted raucous celebrations from the Burnie Hurricanes supporters at West Park.
This season’s Grand Final featured a remarkable shift in momentum from the afternoon of Day 2. The Hurricanes batted first and posted a modest 141, and Ulverstone looked to be a big chance of taking a first innings win. But from that point forward the game was dominated by the Hurricanes, dismissing Ulverstone for just 42, and then batting long enough to make an outright result unlikely.
The umpires were faced with a tough decision to select the player of the match, to be awarded the Trevor Docking Medal. Ulverstone’s best performance came from Jacob Wiggers with 5-28. The Hurricanes had a few contenders, with Zach Walker’s 39 first innings runs pivotal, along with the performances from pace trio Tyler Johns (4-16), Shaun Redman (3-18) and Kurt Lamprey (3-7).
In a low scoring game, it was the skilful, determined performance from Hurricanes wicket-keeper batsman Nick Granger that got the nod. He was awarded the Trevor Docking Medal after making two of the four highest totals in the match (21 and 80 not out) and taking four important catches in the Ulverstone innings.
This was a great reward for Granger, who returned to the Burnie Hurricanes and CNW in 2017/18, and then stepped into the head coaching role when Charlie King was forced to return to the UK. He and skipper Nick Revell guided the Hurricanes into top position on the ladder, through a tense Semi-Final against Devonport, and ultimately an outstanding Grand Final performance.
Special praise is also reserved for match umpires David Hudson and Scott Pearce. Hudson officiated his ninth Grand Final, while Pearce stood in his sixth consecutive decider. Both umpires handled the changing weather conditions and pressure situations exceptionally well.
The celebrations will now begin in earnest at West Park!
Thanks to Burnie City Council and the Burnie Hurricanes for hosting the match at West Park. The pitch and ground were in great condition for the decider. We also thank President Shane Crawford for conducting the post-match presentations, and Trevor Docking for presenting the medal bearing his name.
Finally, thanks to all the spectators who attended the game, and to all the players, clubs, umpires, officials, volunteers, members and sponsors who have supported CNW in 2018/19.