The Tewantin-Noosa Thunder First Grade team started the 2020-2021 season with a win. Playing their old rivals Gympie Gold at Read Park last Saturday in a T20 match, the home side showed they are going to be very competitive this season under their new coaching regime. The First Grade team this season is made up of a mixture of experienced players and some younger emerging cricketers.
Winning the toss TNT decided to bat first and openers Chris Wright and Alex Bennett started strongly scoring at nearly 8 runs an over. Wright was out LBW for 42 scored of 28 balls (seven 4s and a 6) in the seventh over with the score on 58. Bennett was joined by Jarrod Officer but the young batsman was out for 19 with the score on 78. Officer continued the scoring splurge and after the allocated 20 overs he remained unbeaten on 56 (eight 4s). Andrew Kratzmann also contributed a quick fire 21 to the team’s innings. The TNT’s total of 3 for 148 was the highest 20 overs score recorded by any of the Sunshine Coast’s eight first grade teams playing on Day 1 of the T20 matches.
Gympie began their innings well, keeping up with the required run rate but when Scott Aufderheide took the first wicket in the fifth over, their scoring rate slowed. Wickets fell regularly with tight bowling and excellent fielding and the Gold boys struggled to regain the ascendancy. At the finish they were 5 down for 125, still 23 runs behind the required target. Best bowling figures for TNT were Jake Dennien 2-19 off 3 overs, Scott Aufderheide 1-18 off 4 overs and Jason Toohey 1-17 off 2. The pleasing highlights of the match were the confidence shown by the batsmen, the first-class fielding (catching and throwing) and the wicket-keeping of teenager Cody Pyne in his debut in this role for the team. (no byes and two stumpings)
Most of the other first grade teams played two matches on Saturday but TNT will need to reschedule their night match against Nambour over the next couple of weeks. Next Saturday the team travel south to Caloundra to play two T20 matches, the first at 9.30am against Caboolture Snakes and then at 1-30pm against Caloundra Lighthouses. The series of T20 matches will continue to early October before the two-day fixtures commence.