Centrals' bowler Luke Barrett is close to a special feat.
Centrals' bowler Luke Barrett is close to a special feat. Cordell Richardson

Centrals allrounder puts team success ahead of record

CRICKET: Dependable Centrals allrounder Luke Barrett only needs six more scalps to achieve a 150 wicket milestone in first grade.

However, the right-handed top order batsman didn't even get a chance to bowl his left-arm medium pacers in yesterday's latest victory at Limestone Park.

Unbeaten Pool B leaders Centrals secured a spot in the Harding Madsen Shield semi-finals after rolling Toowoomba opponents Southern District Magpies for just 61 chasing 170 at Mark Marsh Oval.

It only took Centrals 20 overs to destroy the Magpies batting line-up. Opening quicks Geoff Klease (2/16) and Rhys O'Sullivan (2/12) did the major damage before captain and off-spinner Matt Guest (3/21) and first change bowler Mick Abbott (1/12) completed the wipeout.

Barrett praised his bowlers for their fine effort, especially after Centrals' middle order faltered following a positive start by openers Tim Weber (61) and former skipper Wayne Jones (26).

Centrals had the visitors reeling at 3/7 and 4/15.

"Geoff is going really well. He's bowling very accurate with good pace,'' Barrett said. "And the same with Rhys.''

As a senior member of the team, Barrett was pleased to see his team's early progress in the Harding Madsen Shield and Ipswich and West Moreton Cricket Association competitions.

Centrals secured two bonus points for their latest comprehensive win.

"We've taken off where we left off (last season) really,'' Barrett said.

"We had a bit of a hiccup yesterday with the bat during the middle overs where we lost a few wickets but other than that, we've batted pretty well to start the season off.''

Barrett said Weber's innings on Saturday was just what the team needed, not knowing what was going to happen later.

"He hit the ball really nicely. He put the bad balls away and took it to their opening bowlers,'' Barrett said.

"He set the game up for us. Lucky he was there to get us off to a good start.''

As for his chance to break through the 150 wicket barrier in first grade, Barrett said he would bide his time with last year's IWMCA champions going so well.

"I was happy not to bowl yesterday,'' he said. "We only bowled about 20 overs.

"I'm not really thinking about it too much. I'm just more focused on when I do get a bowl, just trying to bowl well and I'm sure the wickets will come from there.''

Centrals' next match in the Harding Madsen Shield series is against Toowoomba side Metropolitan East away on Saturday.