Albion and Union will contest the Borton Cup final on Saturday after downing Waitaki Boys’ High School and Valley respectively in their semifinal matches.
Saturday’s final will be the 99th of its kind, and will pit the holders, Albion, against the competition’s most dominant side of recent times.
Union held the trophy for four seasons before Albion broke the Blues’ firm grip on the coveted prize in the 2012-13 season and retained it last year.
The two sides met in last season’s final, where the Mungas took a 48 run win at the Whitestone Contracting Stadium.
Albion produced an impressive performance at Waitaki Boys’ artificial surface for a 308 run victory to secure a final berth on Saturday.
The visitors’ 402/7 is the highest 50 over total in the club’s history.
Opener Ammer Mirza (78) got the Mungas off to a solid start, but Gary Mahuika was the standout performer with the bat.
Mahuika, who was facing his son Dallas, set a new record of the highest score from an Albion senior batsman with 172, including 22 fours and 9 sixes in a ruthless display.
Blake James took two wickets for 67 runs off his 10 overs in a pedestrian performance with the ball from the home side.
Waitaki were then skittled out for a meagre 94 in just 16 overs.
Dallas Mahuika (22) offered the most resistance as Waitaki failed to deal with the Mungas’ dominant bowling attack.
Brad Kernahan was in exceptional form, taking 4 for 9 from two overs while Paul O’Dell (3/38 off 6) and Ian Cooney (2/14 off 2) also had a good day.
Union won the toss and elected to bat first in their semifinal against Valley.
The Blues were all out for 226.
Brad Fleming (81 not out) was the standout with the bat, while Dan Conlan (43) also performed well.
Nick Kelland (2/46 off 10) and Tom Squire (3/36 off 9) were the best with the ball for Valley.
In reply Valley were all out for 190 with Hayden Tisdall (62) top-scoring.
Mike Ormandy took 3 wickets for 35 runs off his 8 overs and Paul Johnston’s (4/37 off 10) good form continued.
Next weekend’s final will begin at 12.30pm at the Whitestone Contracting Stadium.
By James Ford
PHOTO: JAMES FORD – Gary Mahuika’s 172 is Albion’s highest score by a senior batsman.