A century from Young Blues captain Jonte Powderly on Saturday helped advance his side in the Division One finals.
The Blues thumped Central Hotel Cootamundra by more than 100 runs to book their spot in this weekend's preliminary final. The Blues and Young Coyotes will go head-to-head in the sudden-death clash with the winner progressing to the grand final the following Saturday.
The Coyotes were defeated by Cootamundra Crusaders on Saturday in the major semi-final, but will get a second chance on Saturday to secure a grand final berth. Powderly led the Young Blues to 5-229 with an unbeaten 115 at Cranfield Oval.
Batting first drop, Powderly entered the crease early and combined with Peter Guthrie (43) to establish a 116-run second-wicket partnership. Runs continued to flow throughout the innings with Sam Davis (26), Phil Dearden (14) and Clancy Hislop (13 not out) all adding valuable runs as Powderly approached and passed his 100.
His century included 14 fours and three sixes. Best with the ball for Cootamundra was Joel Pearson (2-48). In reply, Cootamundra struggled to build momentum. Wickets fell in clusters as the visitors were bowled out for 110 in 26 overs.
Blues spinner Brendan Croese picked up four wickets while Mitch Cameron (2-23) was the other multiple wicket taker.
Daniel Rankin (36) hit four sixes late in the innings to top score for Centrals.
The result means the Blues and Coyotes will face off in Saturday's preliminary final.
The Coyotes were bowled out for 93 and beaten by six wickets in Saturday's major semi-final.
Brett Bushell scored 44 at the top of the innings but no other batsman hit double figures. Jason Hall picked up two wickets as the Crusaders scored victory in the 26th over. Matt Berkrey was 53 not out.
In Division Two, Stockinbingal were eliminated while Temora Renegades booked a grand final spot. Young Gunners and Family Hotel Cootamundra will meet in Saturday's preliminary final with a spot in the decider up for grabs. That match will be played at Gus Smith Oval.
Meanwhile Young's Hedditch Cup challenge against Temora was postponed to this Sunday.
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