Twenty20: Rams cling on in finals race

RINGWOOD'S self-belief remains high despite a close loss to reigning Premier Cricket Twenty20 champions Prahran at Toorak Park on Sunday.

After being bowled out for 86 in 19 overs, the Rams could have thrown in the towel against a True Blues side that included international stars David Hussey, Chris Rogers and Englishman Dimitri Mascarenhas.

But instead the Rams put faith in young bowlers Michael Topp (2-15), Blair Allan (1-10) and Ian Holland (3-6) and the trio responded to have the home side 5-34.

With the game in the balance, Mascarenhas came to the crease and proved too hard to dismiss, making 35 off 45 balls to take his side to victory at 6-87.

The Rams beat Frankston-Peninsula by a run on Saturday with Tom Stray (53 not out) hitting the winning runs off the final ball.

The loss to the True Blues leaves the Rams in third spot, trailing second-placed Richmond on percentage only, with two matches remaining in the Twenty20 competition.

The top side gets to host the grand final against the second-placed side on December 16.

Rams captain Ben Osborne said his side still believed it could reach the grand final, as long as it won its final two matches against North Melbourne (Wednesday ) and Carlton (December 12).

"If we can end up winning five of our six matches then we might well sneak in there," he said.

"Hopefully, we win both then one of the top two slip up so we can sneak past them."

Osborne said the Rams remained confident even when the odds were against them.

"While we lost the game I was really happy with the belief the group has got after we lost so many tight games last year," he said.

"It was a fantastic effort to almost defend 86 against a full-strength Prahran.

"I was really happy with the back half of that game.

"We don't have long to reflect on our sorrows because we are back on the field on Wednesday."

Ringwood visits North Melbourne for a Twenty20 match this

Wednesday at

Junction Oval at 5.15pm.

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