By Nick Creely
As proven by the successful recent history of reigning Victorian Premier Cricket premiers Dandenong, when their bowlers get on a roll, good luck containing them.
Prahran found out the hard way just how difficult the Panthers are as a prospect on Saturday, completely dismantling the True Blues in the early stages at Shepley Oval.
The True Blues won the toss and batted, and quickly worked their way out to 0/21. But, that’s where everything fell apart.
James Wilcock (3/28) found the edge of James Billington to get the collapse started, and through a brilliant bowling display by the likes of James Nanopoulos (2/21), Jakeb Thomas (2/39) and also Peter Sweeney (1/23), the True Blues were shell-shocked as they suddenly found themselves 6/44 in the first hour.
While the visitors fought back admirably through braves cameos from Stephen Seymour (31) and debutant Lachlan Bangs (40), their eventual total of 147 was never going to be enough considering that in-form openers Tom Donnell and Brett Forsyth would be greeting them.
The non-fussed pair knew exactly what they were doing, and swiftly knocked up yet another 50-run stand to add a collection that is growing in legend.
Just shy of another 100-run stand, Tom Donnell fell for a well made 39, but Forsyth, the leading run scorer in the competition, just continued on his merry way, crossing another half century. If it not had been for the small total being chased, who knows who many runs, or how long he would have batted.
The ability for the dynamic opener to bat long periods has been a hallmark of his game, and even in the white ball format, has proven he is a player with many tricks in his bag. Forsyth eventually finished unbeaten on 80, to take his season tally to an astonishing 478 runs at 79.7, as his Panthers crossed the total in just 37.4 overs and two wickets down.
The comprehensive win sees the Panthers surge into sixth spot on the Premier ladder, with a 4-2 record ahead of a big clash against Melbourne at the Albert Ground on Saturday.