Borton Cup Final
Union vs Albion
Centennial Park, 26 March 1994

Albion 140 ( A. Robertson 47no, G. Pitches 20, T. Roberson 15, J.B. Crombie 3-22, M. Wilson 3-30, G. Pope 2-24 )
Union 141-9 ( S. Curle 27no, A. Lemon 23, G. Pitches 4-21, A. Ranger 2-19, A. Zych 2-28 )
Union by 1 wicket.
Scorecard for the match

Mark Wilson captain of the Union C.C. side

In what would go down as one of - if not the best - cricket games in North Otago club cricket history, Union beat Albion by 1 wicket on the final ball of the match to become the first winners of a Borton Cup final.

Up until the 1993-1994 cricket season the Borton Cup format for the North Otago Senior club competition consisted of league play were the winner was determined to be the team with the most number of points at the end of the season. The Albion Cricket Club and the Union Cricket Club had been the last two winners under the old format, with Union during the 1991-1992 season and Albion in 1992-1993. Over the years the two teams had developed a very competitive rivalry and this would continue over the following decade.
The Union team had qualified for the final in second last week of competition finishing first, while Albion had to beat Oamaru during the last week of round-robin competition to finish second and earn the right to play in the final against Union. Both teams were stacked with talent and when the two teams had met four week earlier at the Showground's, Albion won in a low scoring affair which could have gone either way. Rain during the week leading up to the final left the outfield wet and damp.
As daylight saving had been set during the previous week, and slow over rates in the 50 over final it came down to the tail end of the Union order in the gathering gloom and darkness to bring Union to victory. In an interesting move the Albion captain decided to bowl Trevor Robertson, in the twilight of his cricketing career and who had not bowled any over's at all up that point in the match, for the final over.

The Albion Cricket Club during this period of time was sponsored by the Northside Seven Tavern and where known as Albion- Northside Seven.

The following is a match report written by Simon Bloomberg that was published in the Monday 27 March, 1994 edition of the Oamaru Mail under the title "Union snatches senior cricket title of last ball"

Union snatched a remarkable comeback snatch victory on the last ball of the match in the Brydone Borton Cup senior club cricket final played against Albion-Northside Seven on a waterlogged Centennial Park on Saturday.
Albion appeared to have had the cup in safekeeping after Graeme Pitches destroyed Union's middle order with the game's outstanding piece of bowling. Union was making steady progress towards its target of 141 when Pitches dismissed Mark Wilson, Grant Hiscoke and John Crombie in consecutive overs to seize the initiative for Albion.
Wilson was caught behind by Tim Peterson, Hiscoke went to a bat-pat catch by Craig McDonald and Crombie was out to a brilliant one handed catch by Avon Robertson as Union slumped from 51 for four to 62 for seven.
The experienced Shane Curle and Alex Lemon steadied the innings although Unions chances of winning became increasingly remote as the run rate slipped below the required 2.82 per over.
However Curle and Lemon soon got into stride picking up ones and twos with some sharp running between wickets as Union reached 108 in the 40th over. The run rate slowed when Avon Robertson came back for his final spell but once he had completed his 10 overs Union continued scoring at around four runs per over.
Lemon was finally out for 23 attempting to hook Andrew Zych after scoring 53 valuable runs for the eighth wicket.
Gerald Dodd added a further nine runs with Curle before he was dismissed off the first ball of the 47th over leaving Union needing 17 runs to win of 23 balls and one wicket remaining.
Curle and Pope gave their supporters a few anxious moments when they attempted and somehow succeeded with some suicidal singles as Union reached 135 for nine at the end of the 49th over.
Trevor Robertson conceded two wide's and two singles of the first five balls of the final over leaving Pope with the strike and Union needing two runs to win off the last ball.
Pope rose to the occasion with a delicate cut over point giving Union two runs and a sensational victory in the rapidly fading light.
Despite the atrocious ground conditions which largely restricted the scoring to singles it was an entertaining finale to the senior competition. Curle and Lemon were the heroes for Union although Albion contributed many of the games highlights.
Avon Robertson scored a fine 47 not out and took a great catch to dismiss Crombie while Pitches almost won the game for Albion with his bowling.


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