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DRL Grand Final Preview: Kensington
02/26/2018 7:03 PM ET
 
The Don Rice League Grand Final is set for Wednesday February 28 at 7:00PM featuring the two best Under 20 club squads in the South Australian Baseball League. 

The Kensington Cardinals are looking to add another trophy to an extensive cabinet but standing in their way is the undefeated West Torrens Eagles (read West Torrens preview here). Today we preview the Kensington Cardinals.

The Cardinals bring a savy side to the table, one which coach Darren Roberts describes as a team filled with consistency, plenty of good players and great defense. Notably, they are headlined by Blake Farr, Jack Platten and Sean Maple who are fresh off an Under 18 National Championship with the South Australian squad in January.

Kensington finished the season with a 7-2 record - the fourth best in the competition. A thrilling 8-5 win over East Torrens in the North Division final secured their spot in the big dance. Now they play juggernaut West Torrens who have yet to drop a game this season. This will be the first - and only - encounted between the two teams this year.
But Kensington is a powerhouse in their own right. Their only two losses game at the hands of the East Torrens Red Sox who the Cardinals nipped last week in the preliminary final. In their other seven games their record is perfect and they've pounded opponents by a combined score of 76-22. 

This Grand Final is looking like two Titans ready to collide in South Australia's biggest baseball stage - under the lights at West Beach.

We caught up with coach Darren Roberts to ask him a couple questions about the season. The answers are below. Don't forget to head down to West Beach on Wednesday 28 February for what should be a fantastic match featuring some of the most promising young players in the country!
1) What is the biggest challenge you've had to overcome this season?

The biggest challenge was getting everybody there for game time and focused and ready to play. 

Our squad is a mixture of players from Under 17 right to Division 1 so for me a challenge is to have the right balance for all to play, experience and a mix of players. 

2) Who will be your starting pitcher. What can you tell us about him?

I'm not sure who will start but Tom White has been a big part of the pitching staff. Tom has started Div 3, Div 2 and been in the bullpen for Div 1. We will need three guys to do the job, though.

3) How do competitions like this help develop young players in state baseball?

It helps develop the young and it gets more game time for the senior group.

4) Talk to us about your line up. What sort of batting team are you?

Our line up is consistent. We are not long ball hitters but we have good contact backed up with great defense.
6) What do you want the baseball community to know about this squad?

We play a good form of baseball which is great to watch. No outstanding player but all very good baseball players with a lot ahead of them. 

7) Kensington has a strong record of success in recent years at all levels. What do you think attributes to this?
With the senior side playing well, Kensington brings that through the juniors to train together for that senior experience - learning in that environment is such a great thing, and all are equal at the club.

Don Rice League showcases the development of our young players mixed together. They may train together but not actually play in the same side on the weekends.

PLAYERS LIST :

RYLEY CRAIG
WILL CRITCHLEY
BLAKE FARR
TOM GROVE
JOSH LEDGARD
SEAN MAPLE
JACK MILLER
OBI MONKHOUSE
KYLE McCALLEY
BLAYKE McMILLAN
JACK PLATTEN
TOM VASSALO
BEN WHITE
TOM WHITE

COACH - DARREN ROBERTS
ASS C    - DARREN JOLLY
MANAGER - BRONNY LEDGARD
SCORER - SHARON FARR

This story was not subject to the approval of the Australian Baseball League or its clubs.