Christmas break a God-send for struggling Gold XI
CRICKET: Gympie Gold XI all-rounder Troy Ashton is hoping Santa will bring his team some luck over the Christmas break after the reigning premiers suffered their second defeat this season at the hands of Tewantin-Noosa.
Ashton was hesitant to acknowledge the Thunder as the Gold's bogey side but did say pressure was mountain on his charges.
"There is definitely a lot of pressure on us,” the veteran quick said.
"It is good in one way but we have to knuckle down and win the majority of our games.”
Not returning to the pitch until January 7, the Gold has overcome a mixture of injury and unavailability this season and Ashton hopes the Christmas break will bring a change of fortune.
"Luck is not with us at the moment; hopefully Santa will bring us some for Christmas.”
The Thunder top order exerted its new-found authority to hit up 5/259 against the Gold at the weekend.
It was a challenge unanswered when bad light stopped play after 40 overs.
Struggling at 6/167, Gympie was 33 runs adrift of the Duckworth-Lewis target for the shortened game.
Openers Kris Whitworth and Al Kristensen set the stage with an 84-run pairing before both were removed by a rare bowling appearance by gun batsman, reluctant wicket-keeper and occasional off-spinner, Lewis Waugh, whose record over the past five seasons stands at 23 overs, 1/120.
This combined Alex Bennett and Andy Kratzmann for another century partnership, following their 178 combination against Nambour.
They took the total to 205 before Bennett was run out for 50, and Kratzmann cemented his top run scorer spot with 65, to lift his season tally to 412.