AT the time his Ringwood Rams needed him most, Rams star David King stood tall and led his side to a memorable victory over Dandenong Panthers at Shepley Oval on Saturday.
After making a 106 against Panthers star fast bowlers James and Darren Pattinson on the first day, King came on at a key juncture in the Panthers' run chase and snared the vital wicket of batsman Brett Forsyth (38), leaving the home side 3-117 chasing 237.
From that point the Panthers lost four quick wickets, then in the final hours of the day were bowled out for 185 from 65.5 overs.
King (4-34) ended with the most wickets while Ian Holland (3-58) and Michael Topp (2-30) were also in good form.
Rams playing coach Gavin Kellar said King's performance was the difference in the match.
"His game was outstanding," Kellar said.
"He put his hand up and won the club this game of cricket.
"David came on to bowl at the crucial stage. They had a reasonable partnership going and he came on and got the key wicket."
Kellar said the win would build confidence among his side, which had lost some focus with its bowling in the early part of the day.
"We started a little slowly and didn't hit our zones early on," he said.
"But after we got the first wicket of the day, we went back to bowling to our lengths and dried up the scoring. In the end our line and length outlasted their batsmen."
The day was successful across the club, with all four senior sides winning.
Panthers vice-captain Tom Donnell said his batsmen had not held onto their wickets long enough to make the total. "It was a disappointing result after we had set the day up well," Donnell said.
"No one in the middle order put their hand up to bat a long period of time."
The Rams host Camberwell Magpies at Jubilee Park, Ringwood, for a two-day game starting on Saturday.
Premier Cricket ladder: Melbourne 73 points, 1.74 per cent; Prahran 70, 1.33; Ringwood 59, 1.25; St Kilda 57, 1.41; Richmond 51, 1.71; Carlton 49, 1.09; Frankston Peninsula 48, 1.01; Dandenong 47; 1.32; Melbourne Uni 47, 1.05; Fitzroy Doncaster 44, 1.11; Casey-South Melbourne 41, 0.82; Geelong 35, 0.88; Camberwell Magpies 33, 0.80; Footscray Edgewater 27, 0.93; North Melbourne 26, 0.70; Haw-Monash Uni 12, 0.63; Essendon 12, 0.62; Northcote 9, 0.53.