WRAP: Vic men make their #IntSeries move

Zach Murray
Zach Murray in action at Melville Glades.

Captain Zach Murray has ensured he will at the very least look the part if Victoria reach the men’s Interstate Series final after they took an important step towards the decider in Perth on Thursday.

The Vics clinched two crucial wins, firstly in a key match-up against Queensland 4.5-2.5, before seeing off South Australia by the same margin after lunch.

The results mean that Victoria will book their place in the final, where New South Wales await, if they can overcome a plucky Tasmanian outfit on Friday morning.

And while Murray knows any win during this Interstate Series can not be taken for granted - Tasmania produced a stirring 4.5-2.5 win over South Australia this morning - he has afforded already himself one one little luxury looking ahead to a potential final place.

 “I’ve washed my clothes to make sure I’ve got a pair of jocks and socks for the final,” he joked.

“But in all seriousness that is what we’re here for - to make the final. I’ve said if we can make the final then it’s anyone’s ball game. Once the pressure goes on, no-one is immune to the pressure.

“Some handle it better than others and obviously New South Wales are a very strong side but we pushed them.

“We just have to try and get over the line tomorrow against Tassie who have some very good players in their side.

“We have to be careful and just put our heads down. Everyone has to defend their one point and if we can do that we’ll be as happy as Larry.”

New South Wales have been the benchmark team at Melville Glades this week and made it five wins from five games when they rolled over Northern Territory 6.5-0.5 this morning before having the afternoon off.

The leaders will meet Western Australia on Friday morning with the third-placed hosts retaining only an outside chance of reaching the final.

The West Aussies did their chances no harm with a 7-0 whitewash of NT - Min Woo Lee highlighting their dominance with a 9&8 victory - but need the Vics to trip up.

That appears unlikely after Victoria showed their depth with their bottom four players winning in both matches to ensure Murray’s return of a half-point was not a concern.

Matias Sanchez as well as Lukas and Kyle Michel collected back-to-back wins while William Heffernan and Matias Sanchez were also victorious when called upon.

“The bottom order really kept us in it this morning - they played exceptionally well,” Murray added.

“We got the chocolates this morning and that was huge, we really needed that. It was the key to our day  - get over Queensland and then crack the whip this afternoon, which we did.

“I’m very proud of the lads they've done a cracking job today.”

Queensland bounced back from their morning disappointment with a 5.5-1.5 win over a Tasmanian team full of confidence after their earlier win.

Louis Dobelaar set the tone with a 7&6 win while Jed Morgan, Douglas Klein and Charlie Dann, who won on the last, also got over the line.

Shae Wools-Cobb, who earlier beat Murray 2-up, halved his contest with top-ranked Tasmanian Craig Hancock, who earlier sealed the win over South Australia when he beat Matthew Lisk 1-up.

Mitch Van Noord also won on the last after Andrew Phillips and Nathan Gatehouse also got up to offer enough evidence to Queensland and Western Australia that their bid to reach the final is not completely forlorn.

WA’s big win today ensured they would leapfrog Victoria should they manage to beat New South Wales and see the Tasmanians spring another upset while Queensland take on South Australia knowing they need both Victoria and Western Australia to lose.

“We do have one foot in and we’ve just got to chuck that other foot in there tomorrow,” Murray added.

“We’ll do our recovery tonight and give it 100 per cent.”

Murray also had words of congratulations for Victoria’s women after they won their final at the same time he was walking down the 18th during his halved match with Lachlan Baker.

“Congrats to them. They have done a brilliant job,” he said.

“They fully deserve it and they’re a great bunch of girls and they fully deserve it.

Asked if a Vic double could be the cards, he added: “Could be. That wouldn’t be too bad at all.”

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