Runs at a premium in Borton Cup competiton

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Runs were hard to come by in the latest round of Borton Cup action on Saturday.

Fresh off its Dick Hunt Trophy win the previous weekend, Oamaru once again met Valley, the latter enjoying home advantage.

However, that did not work out in Valley’s favour, as it fell to a 24-run loss in a low-scoring encounter.

After winning the toss and electing to bat, Oamaru soon found itself in trouble at 16 for two when Cormac Hassett and Craig Smith departed early.

Wickets fell at regular intervals and at four for 24, Oamaru was looking shaky.

A crucial fifth-wicket partnership of 46 between Stephan Grobler (24) and Nick Johnston (23) – the next highest partnership for Oamaru was 13 – would prove to be invaluable as the bowlers continued to dominate.

Oamaru’s lower order provided little resistance and after 37 overs, the visitor was bowled out for 97.

Cameron Grubb (three for 13) and Hamish McKenzie (three for 18) did the bulk of the damage with the ball for Valley.

Valley got off to the worst possible start chasing the meagre total and after being reduced to 19 for four, never really looked to be in the hunt, despite a gritty 43 from Grubb, batting at No5.

Wickets continued to tumble – Valley was 36 for seven at one stage – before it was dismissed for a paltry 73 in 23.1 overs.

Extras (15) were the second highest score on the batting card and the next top score off the bat behind Grubb was Rhys Petrie’s five.

Smith, Johnson and Grobler each claimed three wickets for Oamaru.

Things were a lot tighter at Milner Park, where Union snuck home with a one-wicket win over the Waitaki Boys’ High School first XI.

Batting first, Waitaki Boys’ managed to notch up 104 in 39 overs, a score propped up by the ever-consistent Francois Mostert (44), who was well-supported by Scott Kitto (20) and Mason James (18).

Another James – Blake – was outstanding with the ball for Union with figures of six for 20 from 10 overs and Sam Bastin, with three for 28, also contributed.

Union faltered badly in its run chase to find itself nine down with plenty of runs still to get, before Dave Martin and Brad Fleming combined for a 35-run ninth-wicket stand to get their side home.

Oamaru leads the Borton Cup standings with 40 points, followed by Union (35) and Waitaki Boys’ (25).