Mustangs and Panthers eye off Ram-raid

ANOTER weekend, another packed Sunday full of Victorian Premier Women’s Firsts action. It is officially the second half of the 2021/22 season, so it is time to take a look at what action Round 8 has in store on Sunday, with pressure ramped up for some mid-table teams in Box Hill and Dandenong who play bottom three sides Prahran and Plenty Valley respectively. Victories for those sides could knock third placed Ringwood out of the finals spots given the Rams face top-of-the-table Melbourne.

  • Team
  • Prahran True Blues WP1
  • Box Hill Mustangs WP1

Prahran finally got its second win on the board for the season last week, so will be hoping to continue that momentum this weekend. Box Hill on the other hand has had a rather up and down season, and is coming off a loss last weekend to Carlton. Last time these two sides met was back on the opening weekend of this season. On that particular day, it was the Mustangs who were victorious, so Prahran will certainly be hoping to reverse that result from earlier in the season.

The True Blues would love to have access to Annabel Sutherland (118 from one match) every week, but will instead look for a shared batting approach. Rhys McKenna (97 runs at 32.33) and Jennifer Taffs (190 runs at 31.67) are among the top batters, whilst Anna Lanning (193 runs at 96.5) and Zoe Griffiths (109 runs at 36.33) are the Mustangs dangers.

Teenage star Isabel White has taken more wickets than any other player in the competition with 15, including a 5/26 haul, averaging 13.47 with the ball. Holly Spencer and Danielle Montague have both taken eight wickets, whilst Griffiths has nailed six, to all be inside the Top 20. Prahran has struggled in that area with Sophie Day (eight wickets at 14.88) and Merinda Hale (six wickets at 21.17).

  • Team
  • Ringwood Rams WP1
  • Melbourne Demons WP1

After a tight loss last weekend, Ringwood will be looking to get back on the winners list this weekend and maintain its place in the top four. The last time these two sides met was actually on the opening weekend of the season. On that occasion, it was the Dees who started off the season in the best way possible with a win.

Unfortunately for the Rams, they do not have an easy task ahead of them this weekend. They face a Melbourne side coming off an emphatic win over Plenty Valley last weekend and the Demons have been the most dominant side all season.

Amy Vine has been the dominant batter all season for the Demons, with a season-high of 116 not out, and running at an average of 128.5. Ringwood has a strong bowling attack with Hailey Ferris (13 wickets at 8.92) and Bhavisha Devchand (10 wickets at 16.5) which will look to counteract the strength of Vine. Vine is not the only one to worry about from the Demons perspective, with Stephanie Townsend (174 runs at 58) also inside the top 10 run-scorers this season.

Ringwood has Olivia Henry (186 runs at 62 with a high-score of 71 not out) to lead the batting, with Una Raymond-Hoey (223 runs at 55.75) the dominant run-maker for the Rams. Melbourne’s bowling attack is the most feared in the competition though, as Hasrat Gill (14 wickets at 9.43) has the lowest average and second most wickets in the competition. Zoe Samuel and Hayleigh Brennan also have nine wickets apiece.

  • Team
  • Carlton Blues WP1
  • EMP Bombers WP1

Last weekend, Carlton Blues continued their great season they have had thus far with another win on the board, this time against Box Hill. EMP on the other hand lost to Prahran last week, so the Bombers will be looking to return to the winner’s list as soon as possible. When these two sides met earlier in the year, it was Carlton who got the win, so they will be hoping that history repeats itself this weekend.

Carlton’s batting attack has been led by openers Sophie Reid (305 runs including 110 at 50.83 and the most runs in the competition) and Cailin Green (231 runs at 38.5), but Nipuni Hansika (273 runs at 68.25) leads all-comers from the Blues from an average perspective. Eve Sheehan (166 runs at 33.2) has also been a strong performer across six innings, including a half-century. Katia Jomini (seven wickets at 18.43) is the leading wicket-taker for the Bombers, but they really on a shared effort with seven players taking four or more wickets this season. Georgia Gall and Milly Illingworth have each taken six.

Madison Albers leads the Carlton bowling attack with 12 wickets at 16.5, and having bowled more overs (54) than anyone in the league. Rebeka Vandort (six wickets, albeit at a higher average of 31.17) is the next most. The Bombers have strugled for runs this season, with Jomini (141 runs at 35.25 including a 75 not out), and Siena Ferrara (103 at 17.17)

  • Team
  • Plenty Valley Bats WP1
  • Dandenong Panthers WP1

Dandenong certainly left it late against Ringwood last weekend, but still got the job done. Plenty Valley on the other hand are still looking for their first win of the season, and will be desperate to earn it this weekend. It was Dandenong who were victorious last time these two sides met, which was earlier this season.

The Panthers will look to grab a big win against the cellar dwellers, with Tiana Atkinson scoring 140 runs from her four innings at 46.67, though 112 of them came in Round 1. Sophie Strickland (98 at 16.33) has consistent efforts without dominant run performances, whilst Nicole Faltum has scored 87 runs from her two outings. The Bats have struggled on all fronts, with Jane Riley (five wickets at 33) and Aanliya Cheeran (four wickets at 33) the best of the bowlers.

It is not much better on the batting front with Jasmine Nevins far and away the best batter at Plenty Valley. She has produced 200 runs at 33.33, including a half century of 54. Cheeran has the next most runs with 86 at 14.33. Dandenong’s bowling attack is far stronger than it’s batting lineup, with Chelsea Moscript dominating from her four matches with 12 wickets – including 4/50 – at an average of 11.33. Emma Gallagher (eight wickets at 16.5) is the net best, whilst Julie Fearns, Cassie Stephens and Uvindee Wijesena all have seven apiece.

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