A week is a long time in any sport.
Before the final round of Murray Valley Cricket Association premier division one-day action it seemed as if it was a case of Nathalia first, daylight second in the race for this season’s title.
But after the Purples fell to their first defeat at the hands of Deniliquin, the top of the competition table is suddenly a log-jam of teams vying for supremacy.
Barooga has taken over first spot, with Nathalia and the Rhinos also sitting on six victories out of seven.
The gap between the top three and the rest of the field is already two matches, while between each of Cobram (fourth), Waaia (fifth), Katamatite (sixth), Cobram-Yarroweyah United (seventh) and Finley (eighth) there is a space of one win.
The first round of two-day clashes will be action-packed, with matches being completed over tomorrow and Sunday.
Fans at Barooga Recreation Reserve will be treated to a blockbuster contest between the Hawks and Rhinos, with both sides in fine form.
Deniliquin has won five games in a row since losing to the Hawks in round two, while the home side has only tasted defeat against the Purples.
Two of the most prolific all-rounders in the premier division will face-off in the game as well.
Riley Gow has compiled 280 runs at an average of 46.67 in his seven innings with the bat for Barooga and taken 11 wickets at 23.45 with the ball, while Andrew Hogan’s 19 wickets (at an average of 7.74) for the Rhinos leads all-comers and his 228 runs at 57 have helped his side reach the position it is currently in.
Nathalia will look to bounce back against United at Scott Oval, while Finley hosts Katamatite in a bid to snare its first triumph of the season.
The final match of the weekend pits Waaia against Cobram, with a spot in the top four on offer for the victor.
Bomber Brayden Carey has been a key cog in his side’s resurgence after it lost four matches in a row between round two and round five, smashing 422 runs at an average of 70.33.