Demons and Rams on top

Melbourne and Ringwood have emerged from today's first day of Semi Finals as the favourites to contest next weekend's Final at the Junction Oval. If the Demons and the Rams can negotiate the first session tomorrow, they should seal victories in their respective matches against Dandenong and Prahran.

At the Albert Ground, Demons' skipper Andrew Kent invited the Panthers to bat first. Tom Donnell (36), captain Darren Pattinson (41) and all-rounder James Nanopoulos (45) all made solid contributions, but Melbourne's all-rounders Alex Keath (4/41) and Brenton McDonald (3/61) took important wickets regularly and Dandenong had to be content with 191.

Faced with an awkward 13-over period through until stumps, the chase began well for the Demons with a flurry of boundaries, but both openers, Andrew Kent and Ben Way, were dismissed with the total on 25. Michael Hill (26no) and Andrew McDonald (22no) saw Melbourne through until stumps, with the total 2/74, 118 short of victory. Whilst there is still some work to be done, the Demons have their noses in front tonight.

At Toorak Park Ringwood captain Ben Osborne also won the toss and elected to bowl. Early thompson_bowls_qfwwickets to Blair Allan (3/37) and Michael Topp (2/52) saw Prahran struggling at 3/19 before the experienced David Hussey (18) and Chris Rogers (69) took the score to 42. The prize wicket of Hussey, caught down the leg side by Joe Loorham off Allan, put the True Blues on the back foot and they lost regular wickets. Rhys Adams (40no off 39 balls) mounted a late flurry to see the True Blues to 184, adding a useful 36 for the last wicket with Bryce McGain (5). For the Rams, the remaining wickets were shared between Ian Holland (2/60), David King (2/37) and leggie Daniel King (1/1).

With 38 overs remaining, Dimitri Mascarenhas struck early, dismissing Nathan Walsh caught behind for 2 before David King (95no) and Tom Stray (61no) first steadied, then took control, adding an unbroken 169 for the second wicket to put the Rams in the driver's seat. Ringwood will resume on 1/172 tomorrow morning, requiring just 13 to take a first innings result.

Stumps scores on day one:

1sts
Melb 2-74 v Dand 191 (Donnell 36 Pattinson 41 Nanopoulos 45 McDonald 3-61 Keath 4-41)
Prah 184 (Rogers 69 Adams 40no Allan 3-37 Holland 2-60 DA King 2-37 Topp 2-52) v Ring 1-172 (DA King 95no Stray 61no)

2nds
Prah 6-226 (De Bolfo 50 Bull 36 Murphy 63 Green 3-66) v Melb Uni
Camb Mag 0-19 v Melb 8(dec)278 (Cooper 33 Petricola 82 Harper 93no O'Connell 3-52 Dwyer 3-100)

3rds
Melb 8-199 (Gillard 50 Worrall 41 Daly 40 Toohey 4-22) v Ring
St K 7-229 (Maxwell 51no Cooper 65 Gilbert 4-38) v Carl

4ths
Melb 6-239 (Hill 51no Hesham 3-34) v Melb Uni
Camb Mag 6-301 (Jayasinghe 70 Norbury 45 McIntosh 102no Cannon 42 Potter 3-27) v Ring

Women's Premier 1sts Final
Dand 5-192 (Elliott 73no Hunter 48) d Box Hill 8-191 (Hunter 4-48)

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