The Coalfields Cup grand final pits the best of Cessnock and Singleton cricket associations together with Greta Branxton and minor premiers Valley/JPC meeting at Howe Park, Singleton on Saturday from 1pm.
Valley/JPC (1st) vs Greta/Branxton (3rd) at Howe Park, Singleton,
1pm start Saturday 18th March, 2023.
Head to head this season: Played 2, Valley/JPC 2, Greta/Branxton 0.
Last Season: Joint Premiers
Captain: Joey Butler
Premierships: CDCA Four (2004-05, 2007-08, joint 2013-14, 2020-21), Coalfields Cup One (joint 2021-22).
Line Up: Mark Bercini, Joey Butler, Josh Dagg, Chris Murray, Jace Lawson, Reuben Andrews (wk), Nathan Holz, Brent Watson, Mitch Casey, Patrick Andrews, Will Regan, Connor Thomson.
Key Three: Chris Murray, Josh Dagg, Mitch Casey
X-Factor: Brent Watson
Last Season: N/A
Captain: Isaac Barry
Line Up: Kye Dann, Jacob Carey, Brandon Carman, Mewa Jeetarwal, Isaac Barry, Shane Givney, Daniel Storey (wk), Liam Storey, Hayden Moorcroft, Tristan Muir, David Moorcroft, Luke Dempster.
Key Three: Mewa Jeetarwal, Jacob Carey, Luke Dempster
X-Factor: Isaac Barry
In what has been a great first season of full home-and-away games in the eight-team Coalfields Cup, this Saturday's big showdown will see the best of both SDCA and CDCA slugging it out for bragging rights.
Minor premiers Valley/JPC will be looking to make it a premiership treble in their maiden year in the competition as a joint venture, after also claiming the T20 title last month, coincidentally against the same opponents this weekend.
They were first through to the decider when they were good enough to defend their modest target of 153 against fellow SDCA club PCH in the major semi-final a fortnight ago.
Greta/Branxton on the other hand have come from third place to book their spot in the big dance after hard fought wins against inaugural cup champions Bellbird in the minor semi-final, and then recovering from a bad start to overcome PCH in the preliminary final last weekend.
Valley/JPC will look to Indian import Mewa Jeetarwal to lead from the front with the bat.
He has been a great pick up for the club, and he has become a bit of a cult hero since club life member Daniel Storey recruited him to the area before the start of the competition.
Jacob Carey and skipper Isaac Barry will be the other two key batsmen in their quest for the minor/major premiership double.
The youthful Luke Dempster has had a stellar year with the four-piece, and he will be looking for early wickets.
Meanwhile Greta/Branxton will look to build their innings on the back of competition leading run-scorer Josh Dagg, skipper Joey Butler, and Chris Murray who has made every post a winner since being promoted into the top squad prior to Christmas last year.
Speedster Mitch Casey and genuine all-rounder Brent Watson will be looking to restrict the Valley/JPC batsmen when they get hold of the new kookaburra.
Picturesque Howe Park will be the stage for this much anticipated match, and all cricketing fans are encouraged to come out and watch what should be a great contest between the two sides.
Valley/JPC will start slight favourites having defeated their Greta/Branxton counterparts on both occasions in the forty over format this year, along with the final of the T20 tournament.
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