Shared from the 12/5/2019 North Shore Times eEdition

Bears stumble after strong start

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Parramatta rallied late to leave their match against UTS North Sydney evenly poised

PARRAMATTA won the toss and decided to bat under overcast skies, on a patchy wicket with a dry hard outfield, against UTS North Sydney on Saturday.

UTS got off to the perfect start with a wicket to Matt Alexander in the second over removing the dangerous Ben Abbott for a duck.

James Campbell then doubled up for the Bears in the next over with a nice catch at square leg by Mac Jenkins to have Parramatta 2/3.

There were plenty of plays and misses as the opening bowlers got into their work, but the batsmen dug in and refused to give away their wickets.

After drinks Olly Knight made the third breakthrough of the day with an edge taken by Jack James at second slip.

Parramatta made it to lunch 3/63, but 20 minutes after lunch Scott Copperfield was retired hurt, exposing the middle order.

The North Sydney bowlers took full advantage with wickets to Knight in his second spell caught behind by George Lavelle and a wicket to Jenkins with a good catch at backward square by Knight to have the Eels 5/74.

Batting at no 8 Luke Dempsey (50) swung from ball one, taking his chances and changing the momentum of the game as Parramatta scored at more than five an over.

But Campbell removed Dempsey with the score 147. The fall of the sixth wicket brought Copperfield back to the crease with a runner.

Copperfield picked up where Dempsey had left off hitting nine fours and a six. Robbie Aitken (1/43) got one through Copperfield’s defences and Parramatta were 7/250.

Captain Avendano took the new ball in the hope of finishing the innings but it was Campbell and Alexander who took another wicket each.

The tail was determined to hang around for opener Tim Ward as he brought up his 100 late in the day. At stumps Parramatta were 9/291 with the game evenly poised.

The final First Grade T20 fixture was played against Eastern Suburbs at Waverley Oval on Sunday with the Bears achieving a stunning victory.

Olly Knight (82 off 32) dominated the second half of the innings, smashing 10 massive sixes and a four to set up a score of 3/225.

The Dolphins started strongly but ended up falling short with 163. James Campbell bowled well.

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