O’Brien stuns Woolpack with an all-out assault  ( admin posted on July 16th, 2018 )

Federal Hotel showed no mercy for Woolpack Hotel with the Hawks smashing the opposing bowlers to all corners of Cahill Park on Saturday.

In the biggest team total in Mudgee District Cricket Association first grade competition in nearly three years, Federal blasted 9-332 from their 45 overs.

Led by a blistering 138 from James O’Brien, the Hawks were hitting fours and sixes for fun.

Apart from the first two overs where they scored 10, the run rate floated above seven runs an over – finishing with a run rate of 7.37.

The last time a first grade side posted a similar score was January 2010.

On that occasion, Jared Clulow smacked an unbeaten 167 as Oriental Hotel scored 6-344 against a hapless Lawson Park Hotel side.

From the opening overs, the Hawks’ intentions were well known.

They scored 22 runs in two overs and by the 10th over, they were 1-74.

O’Brien and Josh Edwards (52) were responsible for the early onslaught.

Edwards smacked four fours and three sixes on his to a half-century.

Their partnership of 72 came from just five overs.

When Edwards departed, O’Brien took control.

After starting slowly – three off 14 balls – the Western Zone representative quickly stepped up his strike rate.

His 138 came from 107 balls and it included 20 fours and four sixes.

It was the most dominating batting display seen in Mudgee first grade cricket since Clulow’s 167 not out.

When O’Brien was dismissed, Federal were 5-251.

Woolpack thought they had stopped the onslaught when Matt Smith (1) was gone shortly after but Mitchell Hearn added more misery for the bowlers.

Hearn remained not out on 53 as Federal finished on 9-332.

The bowling figures did not look good for Woolpack but Andrew Nash was left unscathed with 1-20 off five overs and Jeremy Newman (2-28 off four).

In reply, Woolpack did not come close to making a dent in the target let alone chase it down.

Without new recruit Steve Knight, Woolpack slumped to 8-72.

Phil English provided some resistance scoring 43 but Woolpack were dismissed for 106 in the 26th over.

In the same week he was chosen for Western Zone for the Bradman Cup, young quick James Ford picked up 4-20 off six overs while the silver fox Dave Edwards collected 4-27 off six too.

SMASH: Federal Hotel batsman James O’Brien scored 138 off 107 balls as his team piled on 9-332 against Woolpack Hotel on Saturday. Photo: SANDY SMITH

BREAK: The power of James O’Brien in his knock took a toll on his bat. Photo: SANDY SMITH

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