MANLY’S first-grade premiership aspirations ended on Sunday in dramatic circumstances against Bankstown.
Chasing 190 at Manly Oval, the Waratahs were bowled out for 177.
Ahillen Beadle almost guided the Waratahs to the grand final after a brilliant century but, in the end, Tim Cruickshank’s men were left to ponder what could have been.
“We didn’t win the big moments, simple as that,’’ the skipper said.
“It was typical semi-final cricket, very nerve-racking.
“Our bowlers put us in a position to win the game on Saturday, but unfortunately the pressure got to us.”
Cruickshank was quick to heap praise on Beadle, whose century followed the other hundred he smashed in the qualifying final against Penrith.
“He is a class player, clearly a level above Sydney grade cricket,’’ he said. “If he doesn’t get a state contract (next summer) it will be unbelievable. ‘ AB’ has shown he is more than capable of playing first-class cricket.”
Manly’s fourth- and fifthgrade squads were both victorious, setting up showdowns against Eastern Suburbs and Penrith respectively this weekend.