Prothero shines as Cane Toads qualify for DIV 2 Finals

The Yarrabilba Cane Toads Last Man Stands side have qualified for their second consecutive LMS Beaudesert finals appearance with a 3-wicket win over No Limits at Glenlogan Park in Jimboomba on Sunday – the Ray White AKG backed Cane Toads falling just short of claiming a bonus point victory – which at the end of the day made no difference in the Jimboomba Times Division 2 standings.

Callum Whiting, the skipper of the Yarrabilba Cane Toads, asked to bowl first and opened with the formidable opening duo of David Sheehan and Evan Gudge. While there was no early breakthrough against the opening pair of Sandro Santo and Grantham-Lee Leukes there were also no devastating blows from the batsmen to wrestle the momentum of the early stages of the contest.

It was, however, the introduction of Christopher Prothero that once again did the trick for the Cane Toads – as it has done plenty of times as of late – with Prothero instantly picking up the wicket of Leukes, bowled, for eight from 12.

Despite some good bowling, and tight fielding leaving the batting side in need of quick runs, they eventually came as Santo opened his shoulders, taking a particular liking to Cane Toads debutant AJ Baker with momentum starting to shift towards the team living up to their name and showing there was No Limits to what they could do.

That was until the Cane Toads found their limits, and it came with the introduction of Gavin Andrews into the bowling attack quickly picking up the wickets of Gary Bender (six from 10), and Daniel Pigram (five from five) both fell to the wiley-bowler who is quickly rocketing up both the national and world LMS rankings.

Sandro Santo continued to push his batting partners with only four boundaries, and a six coming from the entire No Limits innings – all from Santos’ bat leaving a lot of running to be done between the wickets against a Cane Toads side hungry to stop the runs.

With the game evenly poised, Santo with his eye in, and the fate of the match in the balance – Cane Toads skipper Callum Whiting turned to the one person he could turn to in order to stem the flow of runs. Pulling his Trump card, Whiting threw the orange ball to none other than the Yarrabilba Cane Toads X-Factor himself Brendon McCoy.

On his good day the X Factor could get the ball spinning more than the latest fidget spinner knock-off flooding the market, but this was synthetic, a slow outfield, and the good days are far behind him but the club President finished his demoralising spell of bowling at an economical rate of just four an over – coming from his one over.

Sandro was forced to retire on 51 from 39 deliveries, with Byron Gravenorst and Keith Ford responsible for adding some late crucial runs – Gravenorst run out by Evan Gudge for 27 from 31 deliveries, while Ford remained not out on 13 from 11 as No Limits set the Cane Toads 112 for victory.

Gavin Andrews (2 for 17) and Christopher Prothero (1 for 19) were the only wicket takers however all bowlers were tight. Sheehan finished with no wicket for 18 from three overs, Gudge no wicket for 21, while Christopher Prothero one for 19, and AJ Baker went for 31 while McCoy went for just four from his one over.

Callum Whiting, who is closing in on scoring 1000 LMS runs in just one full year of playing, opened the batting with Gavin Andrews both with the intention of setting a solid backbone for the team during the run chase – however it wasn’t to be with Mervyn Buys proving dangerous in the blustery conditions picking up the prized scalp of the Cane Toads skipper for just one (which for those playing along at home is one more than Mitchell Le Prou scored in his match on Saturday).

One of the hottest talents in the Cane Toads line up David Sheehan made his way to the crease at first drop, and despite some early nerves picked up his batting form and helped guide the Cane Toads towards victory. Gavin Andrews fell caught in the deep by Leukes from Pigram for 18 from 14 deliveries.

Despite the loss of Andrews the arrival of Daniel Muller to the crease and combining well with Sheehan looked to have the Cane Toads in a strong position.

Sheehan retired on 54 from 41 deliveries – an innings that included one boundary and two sixes – but the match had once again become poised and could go either way.

Muller and Christopher Prothero had the target within their sights until Muller – who had reached 20 from 21 was (possibly?) controversially given out LBW to Sandro Santo who would finish with one for 24 from his two overs.

With just one over to reach the target to secure a bonus point victory the Cane Toads lost Evan Gudge (one from two) and AJ Baker (one from two) both to Mervyn Buys who finished with three for 18 from his four overs, in a spell of bowling that used every inch of swing one could extract from the conditions, something the Australian cricket team could do with right now during their tour of the West Indies (Buys for the call up – well called it first).

The over from Buys securing the bonus point loss for his team with the completion of the 16th over. However with five runs needed Christopher Prothero capped off a Player of the Match performance finishing on 19 from nine deliveries, the winning runs coming from his trademark stand and deliver shot.

Prothero was supported by the X Factor – Brendon McCoy who finished not out on zero from as many deliveries.

The Cane Toads winning in 16.2 overs and setting up a Qualifying Showdown next Sunday afternoon at Malling Street Oval.