By Mark Heenan
Anglesea gained the upper hand after it triggered an Ocean Grove batting collapse at Ray Menzies Memorial Oval on Saturday.
The 2017/18 A Grade premiers remain in a strong position heading into day two after the Kangaroos dismissed the Grubbers for only 158.
At stumps, Anglesea was 1/34 after 16 overs after Lindon Giuffrida removed opener Stephen Jacimovic (0) for a duck before play ended on day one.
Gun Anglesea bat Ned Cooper remains 25 not out.
Ladder leader Ocean Grove’s 4-0 unbeaten record remains intact and Grubber captain coach Paul Jubber is confident his side could turn it around with early wickets this Saturday.
“To get his (Ned Cooper’s) wicket is a priority for us next week – he is fully aware of how important he is to their side,” Jubber told the Voice.
“If we can get him relatively early we really feel that we could win the game.”
He said the batting collapses in recent games was a concern which the Grubbers needed to address.
At one stage, the Grubbers fell in a hole at 6/86, despite contributions from Michael Kenneady (38) and Ocean Grove playing assistant coach Andre Scholtz (37) late in the innings.
“It is a concern, losing clumps of wickets never really enables you to build any momentum for your innings,” Jubber said.
“We certainly lacked the ability to keep scoring runs even though we were losing wickets.
“For us we need to address it and we need to address it pretty quickly.”
Anglesea coach and speedster Dale Kerr’s four-wicket haul helped put his side on the front foot.
Tyler Dittloff took 3/22 from 8.4 overs.
Kerr removed Kenneady and skittled Scholtz’s stumps to finish with 4/48 from 24 overs.
Kerr missed a large chunk of 2016/17 with a serious back injury and was the leading wicket-taker in the A Grade competition last season with 58 wickets at 8.03.
“The body is actually not feeling too bad…can’t really complain and hopefully fingers crossed it holds me up for the rest of the season and see how we go,” Kerr told the Voice.
Jubber was full of praise for Kerr’s bowling feats.
“Dale is a terrific player and moves with good pace and a bit of in-swing – he is a competitor,” he said.
Kerr said despite his side’s victory over the Grubbers in the 2017/18 decider, he is wary Ocean Grove had the wood over Anglesea in recent times.
Ocean Grove has defeated Anglesea in two of their last three outings at Anglesea, including the Grubbers’ recent 41-run win in Round 2 on 13 October.
“They do sort have a little bit over us, obviously besides the grand final, it is normally a really tough tight game,” he said.
OCEAN Grove’s second XI has the chance to secure their first victory this season after a positive start on day one of their two-day clash against St Leonards in A2 at Len Trewin Reserve.
The winless Grubbers compiled 9/299 from 75 overs.
Grubber opener Dylan Thorley (65) made a half-century while Ben Hughes top scored with 68.
St Leonards bowler Lachlan Campbell claimed 5/81 from 22 overs.
The home side requires an unlikely 300 for victory.
A brilliant innings from Grubber opener Pat Kuipers gave Ocean Grove day one honours in their two-day clash against St Leonards.
Kuipers plundered a whopping 191 in Ocean Grove’s total of 5/329 declared.
Kuipers hit 25 boundaries and 8 sixes, while team-mate Darren Craig was unbeaten on 64 not out.
At stumps in reply, St Leonards were 0/14 after nine overs.
OCEAN Grove had a comfortable nine-wicket victory over Little River in their one-day clash at Rees Reserve in the D Grade one-day competition.
Batting first, the home side was all out for 113 from 35.3 overs.
In reply, the Grubbers won with three overs to spare.
Opener Ry Edwards led the way with 74 not out on debut in his side’s total of 1/119.