Cricket traffic jam

By MITCHELL DALE

THE Coffs Harbour and District Cricket Association first grade table is more congested than a Sydney traffic jam at the halfway mark of the season.

One point separates the top four, while Coffs Hotel Tigers are only three points off the lead in fifth.

Bowlers dominated the second day of round five on Saturday, with the three sides chasing runs falling well short of their respective targets.

In an eventful conclusion to round five:

n Bellingen destroyed Sawtell by 138 runs to join them at the top of the ladder.

n Coffs Hotel Tigers slipped from the top four for the first time this season after crumbling with the bat against Nana Glen.

n Diggers claimed their first win of the season to deny Park Beach Bowling Club Colts outright first place.

With half the season completed, there is no clear-cut favourite for the title, with all sides guilty of inconsistency.

The fact leather dominated willow on Saturday was a perfect snapshot of the season to date.

No side can claim to be in top form with the bat.

Sawtell's batting order, which was so destructive in the first three rounds, has only just managed to pass 150 in the last two matches, while Nana Glen's dangerous line-up has generally failed to fire.

Bellingen and Diggers both posted their first big totals of the season last round, while Colts' only plus-200 score came in round one.

Aside from a brilliant run-chase at Richardson Park in round three, Tigers have also struggled for batting momentum.

With five matches to go before the business end of the season, the two clubs which can start producing bulk runs are likely to be the ones meeting on grand final day in the third weekend of March.



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