RINGWOOD will host Fitzroy-Doncaster in the Victorian Premier Cricket preliminary finals this weekend after drawing its match with St Kilda on Saturday.
The Rams resumed at 9-271 on Saturday and frustrated St Kilda in the first session, adding a further 28 runs before Michael Topp was bowled for 11. Daniel King remained not out on 26 as St Kilda was set a target of 300 from reduced overs.
St Kilda leggie James Muirhead finished with 4-123 from a marathon 41 overs, while Daniel Mueller, Daniel Babula and Shea Gribben all grabbed two wickets apiece.
With 77 overs to face, the Saints had a big chase on their hands and were in trouble early at 2-12, with Chris Blake and Tom Moffat both back in the sheds cheaply. When the key wicket of Graeme Rummans was taken the Saints were 3-66 and then 4-70 when Daniel Forbes was out leg before for 34.
Andrew McGuinness (71) and wicketkeeper Damon Rowan (89) then set about resurrecting the innings with a 132-run stand before McGuinness skied one and was caught. He left the field in anger, ruing the shot.
Rowan shared small partnerships with Muirhead (26) and Mueller (12) but was caught behind trying to lift the run rate. He scored a four and a six down the ground before going out for 89. Topp's 3-30 was the best for Ringwood as Shea Gribben denied them in the final over.
Ringwood skipper Ben Osborne said it was the perfect tune-up for finals. "It was a bit of a nothing result in the end but it was a really good hit out coming into finals," he said.
"It's great playing St Kilda in the last round because it sets you up for finals. That was finals cricket that we played the last two weekends, a real grind, real competitive cricket. We were in control of the game the whole time after we were 3-30."
Rummans said his side would need to improve ahead of this weekend. "We've been a little off the past few weeks and haven't played to our potential," he said. "What cost us were a few missed chances last week that let them get to 300."
Ringwood has all four of its teams in the Premier Cricket finals. It is one of just three clubs to do so this season.
The Weekly had an early deadline for this week's paper due to the long weekend and couldn't get the final RDCA scores before deadline, for all RDCA scores and reports go to maroondahweekly.com.au.