The Centralian advocate Tue 7 Feb 2017
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30 SPORT TUESDAY FEBRUARY 7 2017 CAVE01Z01MA - V1 Anthony Geppa CRICKET GAPVIEW Works captain Ben Ellis has continued his stellar form this one day season, leading his side to an imposing 90-run victory against Federal Asbuild on Saturday. Fresh from an unbeaten ALICE Springs regional cricket manager Alister Stevic said months of preparation have gone into making the 2017 NICC and Imparja Cup the best event yet, adding hes excited to now sit back and watch some cricket. Its been a lot of organising and preparation for the Imparja Cup advisory committee and NT Cricket, a lot of hard work has been put in behind the scenes by a lot of volunteers and lots of stakeholders like Cricket Australia, Yeperenye, the Lords Taveners and the NT government, Stevic said. It was great to see everybodys hard work from the past few months come together NICC brings elite talent when everything kicked off at the opening ceremony on Sunday. Thats the best bit, we do as much work as we do in order to see people enjoy playing the game really. Were fortunate enough to have the very top indigenous boys and gals here for the NICC and witness their skills and their love for the game. Its going to be really great to see them in action. NT Cricket do a lot of work around the NT with remote communities and around the centres like Darwin and Alice Springs so its also great to see them all enjoying playing as well. Its going to be a very, very exciting week. The NICC kicked off yesterday with a round of 50 over matches that saw the NT take open their tournament against WA. Stevic said he believes Alice Springs residents are extremely lucky to see elite indigenous cricketers play in their own backyard. For me personally having the link from communities at Imparja Cup right through to the elite NICC on our own patch and everyone seeing that pathway is probably what excites me the most, he said, Were very fortunate, the quality of cricketers at that NICC level is really top class. Were really fortunate to be able to come down at lunch, after work or on the weekend and witness some top class cricketers on our own patch here in the middle of Australia, usually we have to travel to see those kinds of things so to have it all here is really special. The Major Centres mens, the Community Womens and Community Mens divisions of the Imparja Cup also began yesterday with the week of cricket culminating in the NICC final on Monday February 13. Cricket takes centre stage in Red CentreFrom Back Page NT vice captain Lauren Taylor and captain Kelea Lovell. century in his previous match, Ellis again was the star with the bat with a well compiled 76 including five sixes. Ellis received support from top order batsmen Yasitha Malasekara (28) and Aiden Hookey (26) to help his side to a strong position of 4/104 after 30 overs. Federals bowlers fought back well however with a string of quick wickets seeing Gapviews middle order collapse quickly. Works lack of batting depth was exposed as the club lost four wickets for just 30 runs, posting a competitive total of 175. In reply, Federals innings got off to a poor start with opening batsman Kane Hynes dismissed in just the second over of the innings. Hynes was followed to the sheds soon after by opening partner Tom Nixon, leaving Jack Harding and Dave Carroll to steady the innings. Harding (21) and Carroll (30) did their best to stop the rot but received no help from the clubs lower order with the side eventually dismissed for just 89. The win sees Gapview Works close the gap on West at the top of the ladder while Federal remain in last place. Gapview Works' Yasitha Malasekara shows his form during his side's win over Federal Asbuild on Saturday. Picture: JOSH ABBOTT Ellis stars again as Gapview cruise to a win Gardner called up to Aussie squad FRESH from being selected in the Australian squad, Ashleigh Gardner headlines a host of Australias most talented female indigenous cricketers competing in the female National Indigenous Cricket Championships starting tomorrow. Gardner will lead NSW in Alice Springs when the womens NICC begins tomorrow a week after the 19 year old was named in the Southern Stars squad to face New Zealand in a series of T20 and one day international matches later this month. The call up to the Australian squad comes after a stellar year for Gardner that saw her help NSW take out the 2016 NICC as well as having a breakout WBBL campaign for the Sydney Sixers. Gardner stood out with both bat and ball for the premiership winning Sixers, producing a number of matchwinning innings and finishing with 414 runs and claiming ten wickets. The call up to the Australian squad could see Gardner become the first indigenous woman to represent Australia since Faith Thomas (nee Coulthard) made her Test debut against England on 21 February 1958. NSW have never lost a match at Australias elite indigenous cricket competition having won each title with ease. The Blues defeated NT in last years grand final, dominating the home side by 123 runs. The womens NICC begins tomorrow evening with the NT taking on Western Australia in a T20 fixture at Traeger Park from 7pm with the final held on Monday February 13. Anthony Geppa CRICKET