MT CLEAR’S hopes of wresting the Ballarat Cricket Association club firsts crown from Wendouree have been dealt a massive blow.
Gun top-order batsman Matt Goonan’s season is over thanks to a stress fracture in his right foot.
The dual EJ Cleary Medallist aggravated the injury to breaking point while attempting to take a catch during the opening day of Ballarat’s Melbourne Country Week campaign.
He failed to take any further part in the tournament.
Subsequent x-rays revealed the extent of the injury and Goonan is now preparing for surgery, which will see a screw inserted in the foot, on Wednesday.
“With or without surgery there’s no chance I’d have been able to play this close to finals,” he told The Courier.
“It’s frustrating, but that’s the way it goes.”
Goonan had been integral in helping Mt Clear to victory over Darley in a must-win contest on the weekend.
He made an unbeaten century at number three as the Mounties reeled in the Lions’ 212 at University of Ballarat.
The victory leaves Mt Clear third on the ladder and virtually assured of a spot in finals ahead of a tough clash with Wendouree, starting tomorrow.
Goonan’s ton brought an end to a somewhat lean period with the bat, but helped take his aggregate to 391 runs in club firsts competition this season.
His innings have come at an average of 43.4.
Goonan, a Mt Clear premiership player in his first season with the club in 2007-08, said he would be unable to put weight on his foot for two weeks after the operation.