WHEN Bathurst managed to score only 123 in Saturday's Western Zone Premier League game against Dubbo they needed someone to stand tall with the ball.
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Enter Jacob Ryan.
The ORC player came into the Bathurst attack as the first change bowler and shredded the Dubbo middle order, finishing his day with 5-21 from 10 overs.
Ryan's efforts proved almost good enough to deliver Bathurst victory at George Park but the visiting Dubbo squad got home by two wickets.
But with a list of scalps that include the likes of Marty Jeffrey and Tom Nelson it was a big statement game from Ryan in just his second appearance for the Bathurst side.
Ryan had come into the game off a three wicket performance for ORC in their thrilling Bathurst Orange Inter District Cricket victory over Rugby Union.
The 2021-22 season saw Ryan really hit his stride, with a debut WZPL appearance for Bathurst and 10 wickets across his last four BOIDC games.
Now Ryan looks like he's ready to take another big step forward with his game.
"It's always great to perform for your team, especially when needed," Ryan said.
"Any score is a defendable score in my eyes, as a bowler. I wanted to get out there and do the best I could to keep our team in the game."
His 10 overs also included three maidens.
Ryan said that while there was definitely life in the pitch it still wasn't a George Park wicket that was going to hand everything to you on a silver platter.
"It was probably a little easier to bat on than what everyone thought it was, but you'd get the occasional ball that might do a bit. I think that was always in the batsman's mind," he said.
"I just kept bowling the same ball. Being patient was the main thing - just waiting for the pitch to do something with the ball."
Ryan will have the chance to test himself in the two day arena for the first time this BOIDC season when ORC go up against City Colts this Saturday.
While the cricket season has been stop-start Ryan has been happy with his progress so far.
"ORC, my club, have been really good and they've been helping me improve," he said.
"The boys in the Bathurst team are also great. Rhino [captain Adam Ryan] is fantastic and he's super encouraging. When he backs you then you really back yourself."
Clint Moxon (2-38 from 10 overs) was the other Bathurst bowler to come away with wickets from the game.
Bathurst are currently working with Parkes to find a date for their Western Zone Premier League game, which was rained out on Sunday.
Should Bathurst win that game they will go on to play Dubbo in the grand final.
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