Crusaders polish off All Stars

SEVEN wickets in the last 10 balls of the Alchemy All Stars' innings last night saw the Cock 'n' Bull Crusaders defend their low total of 7-101 and qualify for grand final of the Aussie 15s.

Three wickets to Nick Spencer in the 14th over and a run-out at the start of the final over bowled by Brett Geeves ended the game, before Geeves put the nail in the coffin with three scalps with his off-spin.

After taking 18 runs off Andrew Downton in the 11th over, the All Stars had got the run-chase back on track after needing 44 from the final 30 balls, before Spencer and Geeves combined to deny the Riverside- aligned side.

The All Stars were dismissed for 94, with Tom Briscoe top scoring with 25 before retiring.

Spencer finished with 3-9 from three overs, Geeves 3-19 from three overs and Michael Lukic collected 3-14 from three overs for the Westbury-aligned outfit.

Both teams put in subdued batting performances, struggling to score in a game that is seemingly made for the batsmen.

Save for Briscoe, Crusaders' skipper Dane Anderson, who made 26 from his 15 balls and teammate Matthew Battle, who made 21 from his 15, no other batsman in the game looked like breaking the shackles.

Geeves, who opened with Anderson, also retired with 13 to his name.

The Crusaders were restricted by tight bowling from Josh Bean (2-11 from three overs), Lyndon Stubbs (2-20 from three) and Alex Kerrison (0-17 from three) and excellent fielding, highlighted by a spectacular diving catch Shannon Rumbel.

The Crusaders will face-off against the Star Bar Slashers in next week's grand final, while the All Stars will play the TRC Titans in the third versus fourth battle.

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