GCA president James Sinnott 090408ab03 Port Fairy. Holly Marsh from Pacific Hydro and in front of the new Yambuk Club Cricket Honour Board (PANMURE and Killarney have been rewarded for finishing in Grassmere Cricket Association’s (GCA) top two, with the pair to host semi-finals at their home grounds over the long weekend.
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GCA president James Sinnott said the association introduced a policy about four years ago which allows the first and second-ranked teams in A grade to nominate a finals venue.

The top two B grade sides are then able to nominate their preferred finals venues from the remaining grounds.

Panmure, which was the A grade minor premier, has chosen to play its semi-final against Grassmere at home on Saturday and Monday, while Killarney has opted to play the other semi at Killarney.

The Crabs will take on Hawkesdale.

“The reason we do it is to encourage clubs to improve their grounds and it’s a reward for them for finishing higher up the ladder,” Sinnott said.

“We give them an opportunity to pick their home ground, providing that it is up to a certain standard that we set early in the season.

“Bowlers’ run-ups and having the boundaries properly marked are a couple of the main criteria.”

The president did not believe there would be a huge home ground advantage for the top two teams who received approval to host the semi-finals.

“We’re not playing on turf, we’re playing on synthetic, so it’s all pretty similar,” he said. “The (teams are) probably just in their comfort zone a bit more.”

In B grade, Panmure nominated to play its semi-final clash with Purnim at Wangoom while in the other semi, Grassmere chose Purnim as its preferred venue.

The Meerkats will tackle Yambuk, with both B grade semi-finals scheduled for Saturday.

The A grade semis have been scheduled for Saturday and the public holiday on Monday, which is mainly to avoid clashing with the association’s Sunday one-day competition grand final.

The one-day competition decider will be played this Sunday at Killarney between Hawkesdale and Panmure Hounds.

The GCA executive chooses the grand final venue for A and B grade, with the matches to be played at Purnim on March 17 and 18.

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