By GREG WHITE
If Park Beach Bowling Club Colts had hearts set on rolling Coffs Hotel Tigers to revive their poor start to the season, those hearts would have had a deflated feel about them at the end of their batting dig.
After winning the toss, the Colts were skittled for 92.
In a severe form of torture, skipper Matt Rose and his lads were then forced to watch as the Tigers grafted relentlessly towards the meagre total.
"I suppose it's some consolation thet we bowled well enough to take five of them out before they passed the target," Rose said of this unfortunate day at the office.
"But being realistic, we needed 160 plus at least, to put any real pressure on them and we didn't come close."
It would be taking the easy option to describe Colts as the new whipping boys of the competition.
But in fairness, any team losing eight regulars in less than a year, however good, is facing a trip back to the drawing board.
Tigers stand in captain Darren Funston said coach Brad Greenshields and star batsman Daryl Parmenter had not been missed.
"Everybody thought we'd go under without Greeny and Daryl," he said.
"Everybody, except the team.
"By the time Peter Bayley had his fifth wicket in the bag we knew we had them and only a complete disaster would stop us getting what was required."
Funston said the wicket played beautifully for his boys whereas it was a different story for Colts.
Matt Rose top scored with 27 but only two others could break into double figures.
"Bowling was good," Rose said.
"Batting needs attention."
Matt Francis took 2-12 off his full spell while spinner Andrew Murray chipped in with figures of 2-14 from eight overs.
The win has Tigers back in contention after an inconsistent start to the year.
"Very good for building confidence," Funston said, "which is what we have been lacking at times."
Rose says the critics should hold fire on writing off his young squad.
"Not that I'm making rash promises about winning the competition," he said.
"But one day, someone will take us for granted and what these youngsters have learned will be enough to make that other lot suffer."