Tongala primary cricketers set for Melbourne

By Brayden May

TONGALA'S primary school cricketers have proven they are the best in the region and now it's time to test themselves against Victoria's elite.

The boys team will travel to Junction Oval in Melbourne on December 9 to compete in the School Sport Victoria state championships.

After emerging from the Campaspe region victorious, Tongala finished as Loddon Mallee champions in the most dramatic fashion.

Following a loss in the opening game against Spring Gully, the team soon found its best to win through to the final.

But the side's place in the decider was only confirmed after scoring more runs throughout the day than the third place side which finished with the same win-loss record.

“It was certainly a nervy finish but the boys were super excited when they found out,” principal and coach Rob Hogan said.

Spring Gully were no match for Hogan's side in the final as Tongala powered to a 39-run win.

Under the modified rules, runs scored straight past the bowler and off the tees are worth double.

And Hudson Kellett and Jessie Johnstone took advantage scoring scoring a monster 93 runs from just two overs.

“I think those rules are a great idea because it teaches the kids to play more than just cross bat shots,” Hogan said.

“Hudson and Jessie struck the ball so cleanly during that period which was great to watch. But throughout the day all of the boys made the most of their opportunities to score double runs.

“Remarkably Hudson also took a three-wicket maiden during one of our games.

“For our team to even make the final in the regional finals was a remarkable achievement considering the size of our school compared to others.

“A lot of credit has to go to our sport teacher Peter Tinning who has been critical in helping develop the boys skills throughout the year.”

When Tongala do arrive in Melbourne, they're well aware their school may be smaller in size.

But they won't be playing with any less passion.

“Through the whole process we've received some great feedback about how encouraging our boys are which is really pleasing from the school's point of view,” Hogan said.

“Whatever the result in Melbourne, we're going to be extremely proud of them.”

Tongala Primary School team members: Hudson Kellett, Jessie Johnstone, Harvey Wright, Logan Milnes, Riley Wilkinson, Nathaniel Gee, Benny Smith, Will Brennan, Clayton Rossborough and Jet Jackman.