Shared from the 1/16/2020 North Shore Times eEdition

Bears go down swinging on flat track

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IT was a rematch of last year’s semi-final as North Sydney took on Penrith in the first week back after the Christmas break.

Penrith’s openers got off to a fast start on a flat North Sydney pitch. NSW Blues contracted player Ryan Gibson put on a masterclass, hitting gaps with precision. He was well supported by fellow rookie contracted player Ryan Hackney, who punched singles to give his partner the strike.

Opening quicks James Campbell and Will Graham hit the pitch hard, accumulating dots, but could not stem the flow of boundaries.

In the 10th over Gibson, launched a six into the gutter of the O’Reilly Stand, which he cleared with another in the 12th over.

Gibson brought up his hundred off 90 balls and was finally out for 188 to the left arm spin of Mac Jenkins with a brilliant diving catch taken at deep cover by Ben Bryant.

Penrith reached 1/274 with nine overs remaining and Hackney on 73.

Hackney smashed another 54 runs to finish 131 not out and Penrith finishing 2/346 from 50 overs.

The run chase got off to a positive start with openers Ben Bryant (86) and Tom Jagot (37) contributing as the Bears reached 2/177 in the 31st over. However a few quick wickets proved too much and the Bears fell short with 291.

The lower grades faired well with Seconds, Thirds and Fifths all recording impressive victories against their highly ranked opponents.

See this article in the e-Edition Here