Both captains not happy to play on that blasted wicket

By AARON KELLY RIVAL captains have blasted the standard of the Rockhampton Cricket Grounds after underprepared wickets played a leading role in round three of the Southern Star Sports Shield 2005-06 season at the weekend.

Bluebirds and Frenchville were the only teams to score more than 100 runs with the dry and crumbling pitches proving a bowlers' paradise.

After being sent in to bat, Bluebirds were all out for 113 on Saturday and had defending champions Brothers at 5/21 when play resumed yesterday.

Brothers were eventually bowled out for just 54, with Brendan Dunbar claiming a personal best of 5/5 (8.3 overs).

In the other match, the CQU Tigers were 5/68 at stumps last night in their first innings loss to Frenchville.

Frenchville had earlier declared at 9/181 in their second innings after rolling the Tigers for only 45 on Saturday.

"You can't blame it on bad batting when two games are the same,'' Bluebirds captain Clay Crouch said.

"The outfield is beautiful but a bit more preparation on the wickets would be good.''

Tigers captain Steve McDonald agreed: "It (pitch) was very unpredictable and an uneven bounce.''

While the wickets tumbled at the RCG, the runs were flowing in Yeppoon.

Gracemere's Bob McQuire fell just five runs short of a century after steering his side to their first win of the season against Capricorn Coast.

Chasing 216 for victory, Gracemere finished at 9/279. Round 4 (November 12/19) ? Brothers v Cap Coast (RCG, wicket 1), Gracemere v Frenchville (RCG, wicket 2), CQU Tigers v Bluebirds (Jardine Park). Points ? Frenchville 24, Brothers 22, CQU Tigers 18, Bluebirds 16, Gracemere 10, Cap Coast 6.



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