Top-order batsmen on recruiting wish list for Dennington after succesive WDCA grand final defeats

DENNINGTON will target top-order batsmen during the winter recruiting period in a bid to win next season’s Warrnambool and District Cricket Association division one premiership.

The Dogs, after consecutive grand final losses, started looking ahead straight after being humbled by West Warrnambool in an outright result on Sunday.

Co-coach Dustin Drew said Dennington, which had worked hard developing an array of teenagers, would look to further bolster its line-up with recruits next season.

He said that while his players were disappointed with their second consecutive grand final loss, he predicted they would bounce back.

“You win as one and you lose as one,” Drew told The Standard.

“We’ve got to find ways to improve over the off-season.

“We were completely outplayed.”

Drew said Dennington had the nucleus of a side capable of being in premiership contention next season. 

“We haven’t recruited for a long time,” Drew said.

“We are going to this year. We think we need a couple of top-order batsmen.”

The need for more run-scoring options at the top of the innings was highlighted when the Dogs were dismissed for 59 in Saturday’s first innings.

Drew said the Dogs would continue to nurture teenagers like Nick King, Shannon Beks, Ben Rantall and Jack Lee, who were part of the grand final side. 

The Dogs were the walking wounded on Sunday night, with Drew hobbling from a knee injury that will require surgery and paceman Mick Rantall limping with a calf complaint.

Their opponent West Warrnambool had its own injury concerns, with star Englishman Karl Turner also limping after a decisive bowling spell in the Dogs’ second innings. 

Turner claimed 3-61 off 14 overs, while spinner Paul Campbell had Dennington’s batsmen bamboozled with a career-best 6-25 off 10.2 overs, including a maiden. 

Campbell and Turner frustrated Dennington’s charge for quick runs in the hope of pushing for an outright win.

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