Cricket: Century steers team into final

A BRILLIANT century from Matt Short has booked Central Highlands a spot in the final of the under-18 boys state cricket championships at the MCG.

Short, from East Ballarat, smashed 115 from just 105 balls as the Highlanders secured victory in yesterday’s preliminary final against South East Sharks at Toorak Park.

The opener helped his team chase down the Sharks’ earlier 222, doing so with five wickets and more than six overs in hand.

Central Highlands now progress to the final – held on Sunday, February 24 – on the back of five straight wins during the carnival.

Highlanders coach Paull Jeffrey said it was his team’s effort in the field, restricting the Sharks to a below-par score, that helped set up the victory.

“It’s been the excellent fielding and tight bowling that has won us the games. Everyone has really contributed, the whole 12 in the squad have done something at some stage,” Jeffrey said.

Jeffrey said the team was upbeat about an appearance at the MCG, the under-18 boys’ second in three years.

“There’s a couple of guys that are already in state teams but it’s good exposure for other members of the group as well,” he said.

Central Highlands will take on South East Bayside Breakers in the final after they beat Northern Falcons at Harry Trott Oval, in Albert Park, yesterday.

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