AFTER losing just one game last season, the grand final, Dawson Valley Taipans, were hoping to go one better and claim the silverware in 2012/13.
However, a rebuilt and rejuvenated Thangool Possums are standing in their way and, after a string of crushing victories, are strong favourites to take out the premiership.
This weekend the two top teams in the competition go head to head in a match that could determine the minor premiership.
Taipans' captain Justin Elliott said his team was pretty disappointing, especially with the bat, when the two teams played back on November 3.
"I was away that weekend they thrashed us," Elliott said.
"Thangool is a good side this year. They are undefeated, they are the best team in the comp at the moment and deserve to be favourites.
"However, we will be trying our best to beat them."
Taipans' batting line-up should be at full strength with both Elliott and Simon Green available and, combined with the in-form Dan Hayes and Zac O'Rourke, they will be hoping to guide the Dawson Valley outfit to a handy total.
"(Possums) are a very strong batting side, so we will need to post a score of about 220 and then put some pressure on their top order with some good bowling," Elliott said.
"They haven't been forced to chase down a decent score, so that will be our plan."
This fact is highlight in the stats. Of the 1208 runs Possums have scored this season their top four batsmen have contributed 916, which means their middle and lower order could be exposed to a lack of time in the middle.
At the weekend Possums gave Valentine Plains' hopes of defending their premiership a major dent.
Possums scored 3/216 off their 40 overs with opening batsmen Ray Stanley (109) and Ash Millican (76) scoring the bulk of the total.
Possums then had Plains floundering at 3/28 before Matthew Weeks (72) and Jarrett Weeks (21) steadied the innings. Plains finished their 40 overs at 6/155.
Taipans had a comfortable win defeating Colts by 78 runs. Taipans scored 7/286 with Simon Green top-scoring on 80 and Zac O'Rourke adding 66.
This weekend Taipans take on Possums and Primed XI play Colts.
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