TC United bowler Kate Johnstone lines up her target during Saturday's first division match against Sports at the East Ipswich vigoro grounds.
TC United bowler Kate Johnstone lines up her target during Saturday's first division match against Sports at the East Ipswich vigoro grounds. David Nielsen

Special win keeps TC near the top

HAVING closed the gap on the competition leaders, TC United's latest vigoro victory was even more satisfying.

The second-placed side beat Sports on the first innings despite being one player short.

"We sometimes struggle against Sports but everything came together pretty well,'' TC captain Clare Gillett said.

"We only had 11 on the day (instead of the full team of 12) so to get that win was a little bit extra special for us.''

Such is the closeness of this year's Ipswich first division competition, Gillett knows how important wins like Saturday's are.

Wildcats have retained top spot on 22 points after losing to Occasionals in their latest match.

TC United are two points behind Wildcats with Sports and Occasionals locked in a battle for third.

Two rounds of senior vigoro remain before the Christmas break.

"We started off not on the right foot,'' Gillett said.

"We sort of eased into the season a bit and it's always good to see the girls come into a patch before Christmas and then after Christmas hopefully pick up again,'' she said.

"It's a really close competitition so it's good.''

In Saturday's match, Ipswich representative captain and opening batter Gillett led the way topscoring with 36 in her team's first inning total of 85. She also took 3/4 with the ball.

Gillett was pleased to see middle order pair Simone Harding (18) and Deb Marietta (12) contribute valuable runs batting first-up.

The team ran out of time in the second innings to force an outright win after Sports scored 56.

TC's standout bowler was spinner Shannon Brackin, who took 6/17.

"She's been bowling really well this season,'' Gillett said.

"It (spin bowling) is good variation. It makes the batter second guess.

"She's quite a fast spin bowler too. It's quite difficult to play if you're not watching it and reading it.''

Gillett said having a bowler like first division regular Brackin was a big asset for TC United.

"A lot of the other teams don't necessarily have that particular type of spin that Shannon does,'' Gillett said.

Gritty Lee Scudds topscored for Sports with 22.

Kassy Stephens chipped in with 3/15 and 2/9.

Gillett said Sports were a tricky side to play because they had some good bowling combinations.

"They are a very diverse team, Sports are,'' the Ipswich captain said.

Occasionals helped TC by beating leaders Wildcats.

Nikki McDonald topscored for Occasionals with 32. She was well supported by Karen Devin (27) and Naomi Schaper (19 not out).

Naomi Schaper snared 5/36.

State of play

Division 1: Occasionals 127 def. Wildcats 68 and 65; T.C. United 85 and 28 def. Sports 56 and 3/35.

Latest points: Wildcats 22, TC United 20, Sports 14, Occasionals 14.



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