AFTER six attempts, Shoalhaven Ex-Servicemen defeated Nowra in a semi-final for the first time to earn a shot at their third straight SDCA premiership next weekend.  

After a frustrating afternoon on Saturday, with the covers coming on and off for the rain, Ex-Servos proved far too strong for Nowra at Nowra Showground. 

Only 30 overs were bowled on Saturday, with Nowra batting first and reaching 4/62 before more rain brought play to an early end. 

While the home side had more luck with the weather yesterday, they had no luck with the bat and collapsed to be all out for 79. 

Lain Beckett was the chief destroyer for Ex-Servos with 7/25, while his new ball partner Trevor Thomason bowled well with 3/41. 

Mat Ganderton then played the starring role with the bat, with 86 not out, before the mercy rule was enforced with the score at 3/159. 

The win means they go through to next weekend’s grand final against Berry-Shoalhaven Heads, with the Magpies defeating Bomaderry in a thriller semi-final on Sunday.

Ex-Servos skipper Daniel Gleeson is hoping his team can win their third consecutive title. 

“Obviously we’d be pretty happy to go three in a row,” Gleeson said after yesterday’s win. 

“We’ve got the side to do it, but it really depends on how we turn up on the day,” he added. 

Gleeson said the quality of bowling from Beckett and Thomason, as well as holding onto their catches were crucial to them beating Nowra.

While their bowling got them through to the decider, Gleeson thinks batting will be the key to them winning next week. 

“Last year we didn’t put on a massive score, but we put them under pressure and were able to defend it.

“We’ve got the bowling attack to do it so I think if we can bat first and put on a good score, then we should go close.”

Ex-Servos will play for four premierships next weekend after the club celebrated semi-final wins in all grades.

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