Handley's ton of fun for Frenchville

PATIENCE is a virtue and Frenchville batsman Brendan Handley reaped the rewards of starting his innings quietly last week before building the momentum to score a century against Gracemere at Kalka Shades.

Handley, by his own admission, had been a little bit scratchy in the early part of his innings.

However, he had still done a job for Frenchville as the champion side was at 3-142 after their first 40 overs.

Some of the pressure was taken off the Frenchville batsmen when they resumed as Gracemere had already failed in its task of setting Frenchville a target.

A late collapse last week had left Gracemere in all sorts of trouble at 6-91 and ended its chances of winning the PFD Cup game.

Any hope for the team lay in the hands of Chris O'Shea who did not play on the opening day.

If O'Shea gets his eye in he is the sort of player who can keep the scoreboard moving quickly.

The main problem was always going to be whether Gracemere had the player strength left in their batting order to stay with him.

As it turned out O'Shea did provide a cameo performance, thrashing 25 runs, including four boundaries, in his 27 ball innings.

It was not enough as Gracemere's first innings total, using just 56 of their allocated 80 overs, was 20 runs less than Frenchville's total after just 40 overs.

When Handley returned to the crease to resume the innings it was a far more confident display he produced.

"I had a good partnership with Joe McGahan," he said.

That stand for the sixth wicket produced 88 runs.

Handley said he was delighted to score his third A-grade century, especially as his form has been a little frustrating this season.

"I've been getting starts," he said, "I've been getting into the 30s."

After opening the innings Handley was finally out with Frenchville at 6-272.

Even with a healthy lead Frenchville batted on rather than chase an outright win, giving most of the players a turn with the bat.

With Brock Siegert, Todd and Jason Wells missing some of Frenchville's younger players got a chance of A-grade action.

Handley said he was impressed with Kobie O'Brien whose six overs of left-arm orthodox spin earned him figures of 2-20.



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