Dogs celebrate Grand Final win

Bankstown Second Grade Bulldogs after winning their Grand Final

BANKSTOWN has taken home the Albert Cup after winning the NSW Premier Cricket second grade competition with a dominant performance against Western Suburbs Magpies in the grand final.

Captain Mitch Hinds holding the Albert Cup

The Bankstown Sports Bulldogs took on their neighbours in the Grand Final at Bankstown Memorial Oval.
Captain Mitch Hinds won the toss and elected to bat on the new wicket. While scoring was slow by usual standards, by the end of day one, the Bulldogs had growled enough to get to 7 for 269 and were looking very solid.
Opener Riley Kingsell continued his good form with a well-deserved 55 to help provide the batting impetus. Similarly, while batting at 4, Ryan Freeman scored extremely well with his 78, which included 30 runs off boundaries into and over the fence as he punished anything loose.
Day two saw the Dogs’ wickets fall quicker than planned. Although Ayden Brown got to 30, the Dogs were out after just 45 minutes of play on Easter Sunday.
With runs almost impossible to get and the run rate very low early on, wise cricketers on the sideline suggested Wests were backing themselves into a hole by simply not scoring enough. Indeed, the Dogs’ bowlers took full advantage of their timidity with willow and struck regularly – and were incredibly economical. Although they were wicketless, Justin Felsch bowled 20 overs for just 17 runs, Zane Mitchell bowled 11 overs for just 15 runs and Brown, 21 runs off 10 overs.
With the first wicket falling at 35, there was a slow but steady procession of wickets after that – with the opening partnership of 35 being the Magpies’ best.
Bulldogs’ spinner Mitch Constantinou and medium-pacer Gurinder Hara then took apart the Wests batsmen. With Constantinou’s 4 for 40 off 26 overs, the pair had done the business and the damage. Wests were in trouble at the end of the second day at 8 for 124 – still needing 15 runs to avoid the follow-on.
On Monday, in glorious sunshine, Wests graciously conceded defeat with a truly fantastic Bulldogs performance that saw the side crowned 2023-24 season Albert Cup Premiers.