Can Waugh, Mitchell and Brady turn Gold's fortunes around?
THE second day of play between Gympie Gold and Yandina Pioneers in Gympie this Saturday could be over before lunch, or it could produce a Gympie turnaround.
Playing at Albert Park for the first time last weekend, the young Pioneers got their heads in front by dismissing the Gold for 78, making 127 themselves and taking another three home wickets by stumps.
The task now is to maintain the momentum on day two.
Neither side batted more than 40 overs last week, and with 96 overs available this weekend, much can happen.
If captain Lewis Waugh and Brycen Mitchell, now at the crease, can extend 3/58 into three figures, then with the assistance of a returning Josh Brady, they could easily set the visitors a target of around 150.
The skipper has more than 2000 runs under his belt, and Brady 3650, with 9 centuries, so the potential is there.
The Pioneers would have 50-odd overs to bat to either reach the outright win, or hang on to maintain the first innings victory.
But Waugh could hark back to the grand final two seasons ago when Maroochydore led by 65 first innings runs before lunch on day three.
Then Gympie took two wickets in two balls to start the collapse.
The Swans, all out for 44, set a second innings target of 110 the Gold reached for a maiden premiership.
Who did the damage? Josh Brady with 7/19.
Yet two wickets in the first over of the day could see Yandina depart after an outright win by lunch. Saturday's slate is clean at the moment, waiting for the players to make their marks.
"Whoever we have playing will need to knuckle down and get the job done,” Brady said.
"We have always been pretty strong and to lose a fair few of our first games is pretty tough but we will get there.”
This is not the first time Gold has needed to fire on the last day.
"We have done it before. We have lost first innings before and come home with the win,” Brady said.
"We need to bat long and get a lot of runs and then ball them out fairly cheaply and quickly.”
"We need to bat time and need to bat in partnerships. Bat together and face a lot of balls and give ourselves a chance to score some runs,” Waugh said.
"Our bowling and fielding has been really good, we just need to get our batting right.
"If the top order can get some runs, it will take the pressure off the guys at the bottom.”