TORONTO Workers all-rounder Josh Westwood starred with bat and ball on Saturday, but it wasn't enough to get the better of Newcastle district cricket premiership contenders Hamilton-Wickham.
Westwood claimed career-best figures of 6-67 with his medium pacers as the home team dismissed Hamwicks for 226 at Ron Hill Oval.
He then top-scored with 59 in Toronto's innings of 146.
Toronto captain Corey Brown said Westwood was impressive.
"I thought Westy bowled really well in the situation," Brown said.
"Taking pace off the ball was key on that wicket as the ball was holding a bit. And he bowled aggressively - he wasn't just bowling to save runs - he bowled to his field and was looking to take wickets."
Five of Westwood's six wickets fell to catches.
Westwood's batting again kept Toronto in the game.
He bowled to his field and was looking to take wickets- Corey Brown
It's just that Toronto couldn't provide a batsman to build a prolonged partnership with the tall right-hander.
"It's frustrating that no-one could go on with him," Brown said.
Opener Connor Lupton (who made 26) and No.3 batsman Brown (19) both got starts but couldn't kick on.
Lupton was caught attempting to clear the infield, and Brown fell to a nick while attempting to cut off-spinner Kain Anderson.
"I felt that if one of us had been able to go on with Westy, we really could have given that run chase a shake," Brown said.
Josh Newell (18) was the only other Toronto batsman to reach double figures as the potent Hamwicks' attack took control in the afternoon.
"We were 1-51 and then all out for less than 150... That probably wasn't good enough," Brown said.
Toronto won the toss and chose to field.
"I elected to bowl because the wicket was slightly under prepared, and there was a bit of juice in it," the captain said.
But the half-chances created by the Toronto bowlers amounted to nothing.
Brown thought his team presented Hamwicks with close to 30 runs through misfields and not being alert enough to prevent the batsmen taking quick singles.
Nevertheless, Brown thought that restricting Hamwicks to 226 meant that Toronto had a genuine chance to win.
"I thought we could chase that down, and we definitely had the best of the batting conditions," he said.
Toronto remains at the bottom of the competition ladder, while Hamwicks remain equal second.
The young Kookaburras will host Belmont this Saturday in Round 12, then finish their season against Stockton-Northern Districts at Lynn Oval.
"We see these games as a good opportunity to salvage some respect," Brown said.
Belmont will be without its English import and leading batsman, Marcus O'Riordan, on Saturday.
Brown said Belmont captain Marcus Hainsworth and young representative batsman Joe Gillard would be key wickets for Toronto.
Play starts at 11am in the two-day fixture.