by Pat Drew
A DEPLETED Tewantin-Noosa has shown the depth the club has sought in recent years to get well in sight of Glasshouse's 279, falling for 256 as round three of SCCA Division 1 games closed.
Minus skipper Stephen Shaw, Ben Gear, Codey Rzeszkowski and Jarrod Officer, in Toowoomba at the Schaeffer Shield, and with opener Jake Dennien unavailable, the Thunder had only the parting gift of a quickfire 49 from the captain as the chase resumed from 1/75 at Read Park.
Alex Bennett and Tristan Griffin were brand new at the crease, with Bennett not to trouble the scorers, as Rangers skipper Jeremy Schultz began a personally productive day in the absence of bowlers Steve Heise and Heath Fischer.
With young Leon Manuel, 3/31, Schultz's 4/49 would account for the bulk of the resistance as the home side lack the vital long innings to carry the attack back to the visitors.
Wickets fell too regularly, and at 8/199, English debutant James Beesley's departure seemed a signal for the Glasshouse openers to start stretching. But Jason Toohey, Michael Thomson and Rob Payton thought otherwise.
With Payton the mainstay, Toohey took the tally to 224 before he became Ash Baartz's third wicket, leaving Michael Thomson as the final obstacle.
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Thomson's 100-plus appearances for the Thunder have been rewarded by 155 wickets, but contributed only 256 runs.
Yet as the Thunder innings passed 250, that 279 seemed not so safe, until finally at 256 Schultz found the veteran's stumps, leaving Payton on 41 and the Rangers relieved.
The Glasshouse captain completed a good match with a 48-ball century as the visitors batted again to post 3/121.
"It's going to be crucial to take early wickets and hold on to our catches,” Captain Lewis Waugh said.
The victorious Gympie team got those early wickets.
"We didn't field to our best ability,” Gympie Gold XI player Tyson Hillcoat admitted.
Sam Oldham's debut 88 was the highlight of Maroochydore's reply to Gympie's 265 at Albert Park, but when Blaine Schloss was run out at 20 and Josh Brady stopped Adam Thornton for 40, the Swans had little left, reaching 206.
Anthony Reid's 4/45 was the backbone of the attack, with Troy Ashton only adding four overs for the day, while Brady's cameo of 2/12 off 10 overs was a reminder of his potency.
The Gold ended the day at 9/180 batting for the second time, as Lewis Waugh continued a good season start with 53.
Nambour was a very outside chance to trouble Caboolture's 361 at the showgrounds, and so it proved.
The Cutters posted 159 with Steve Ledger's 44 best, but show persistence to occupy the crease for 76 overs, denying the Snakes the opportunity for outright points.
Batting in the last session, the visitors finished the day at 6/119, with Matt Schubert unbeaten on 61.