1st XI vs Knoxfield @ Knox Gardens Reserve
Round one came around quickly again this season and for the
second year running we had the reigning premier in Knoxfield first up at home.
With a few of new additions to the side in Joe Morsello from Rowville, Shan
Small back from his season off due to work commitments and also Adam Metherell
back from a couple of seasons with Port Melbourne, we were keen to take on the
best side in the comp and see where we were at as a side.
On a perfect afternoon for cricket, we lost the toss and
Knoxfield chose to bat first.
Our season got off to a perfect start with the ever reliable
Adam ‘Wilba’ Wild striking early dismissing one of Knoxfield’s in form batsman
from last season with the score on 3. The bowlers did a decent job all
afternoon, last season we had too many flat spots with the ball and it was a
large focus for us going into this game. Unfortunately, we couldn’t back up our
bowlers in the field, grassing four catches including that of Jack Taylor on 10
and 13, he made us pay and went on to make 55. We toiled away really well and
ended up bowling Knoxfield out for 208, which we thought was around a par score
on our ground, with the new fielding restrictions and white ball. The wickets
went to, Wilba 8 overs 2/30, Scotty Mac 8 overs 1/36, Adam Metherell 8 overs
3/40 and Matt Young had 4 overs 2/24.
We got off to a great start with the bat with Niraj Desilva
and Shannon Small putting on a 65 run partnership and we were going a decent
run rate. Unfortunately for us the loss of a wicket slowed the run rate down dramatically,
we were chasing the game needing around 8+ an over for the last 12 or so overs.
With Knoxfield’s disciplined bowling attack and high standards in the field,
the task was just a little bit too big for us, falling 24 runs short ending our
innings on 6/184. Shannon and Niraj were the top run scorers with Smally making
47 and Niraj 29. Josh Gregory did everything in his power to get us home
finishing on 28*, whilst Matt Young made a quick fire 25.
The loss wasn’t the result we wanted, but we can
take plenty of confidence out of the game knowing that a few things here and
there and the result could have been a different one. We will get out on the
track this week and work hard on the things that didn’t work so well and look
forward to taking on The Basin on Saturday in another one-day game at home.
2nd XI vs Knox Boronia @ Miller Park
Back to work after a successful campaign last season and it
looks like the draw has been copied and pasted from last season as once again
we travelled to Miller Park to take on the Burra in round 1.
Winning the toss and electing to bat has become the norm in
the 2nd XI, so after considering calling tails I called heads and let
the boys chuck on their pads for a hit. The word must have spread that our top
order bats were uncomfortable against the medium pace short ball as they received
a barrage of them which were mostly thumped into the fence or onto the hill.
Lachie ‘Kid Rock’ Stuckey took his chance at the top plundering a very proper
49 and looked at ease unlike Morro who tried to hit one into orbit which only
saw his castle hastled. Josh ‘Cymbols’ Wylde controlled the middle to late over
with our young batting line up all contributing nicely pushing the total to a
very respectable 6/198 on the ridiculously slow ground. Mitch also wanted me to
mention he hit 28 not out including a massive bomb, but I won’t mention that.
The old fox looked once again in ripping nick to go around for
another dominating season so I handed him the new pill. Young Drew Withers didn’t
quite look in as good a nick but I also handed him the new ball. The pair were
far too good for the Burra’s top order and were all over them like a fat kid on
a cupcake. 1 for not many, 2 for not many, 3 for not many and could have been
much worse if not for a couple of sodas going down to the unlucky Mulder. Mitch
then came in like a stream train and blasted out their middle order in scintillating
fashion with his trademark celebrations which almost included a hat trick. I
bowled rubbish and team Jongen finished off the tail to bundle them out for 59
and secure a great first up win. Mitchy G took dare I say career best figures
of 3/7 while his partner in ….life? Drew Withers also had great figures with
3/12. Gerard took a sneaky 2/2 which the great Ritchie would be proud of.
Great team performance and look ahead to a big clash with
long-time rivals The Basin this week.
3rd XI vs Footballers @ Knox Park
On a beautiful spring day to start the season we took on the Footballers in our first game up in Division 4. They won the toss and stole my idea by sending us in to have a bat first. We welcomed Rhys down to the 3s for the first time in a few years and he welcomed the Footballers to season 2017/18 with a 6 off the 4th ball of the day and taking 10 off the first over. I opened up with him and scored as freely as I ever have but couldn’t keep pace with him. Rhys was dismissed for 59 with the score on 87.
Dyllan Milligan came in at first drop and looked very classy in his footwork but a little scratchy with him timing. He ended up with 18 (dismissed with the score on 147) and no doubt with a few more training runs and games under his belt will be up in the 2nds and pushing the guys in the 1s. Hayden Morrison came in at 4 like usual and we employed a simple game plan of trying to hit the good balls for 1s and the bad balls for 4 which he did perfectly. Unfortunately I fell for 76 with the score on 192. Matt Lambrick (17), Sean Reid (15) and Sam Bakker (2*) all came in and assisted Dos who made a very good 57 not out in which he followed the game plan perfectly. Right to the end he was hitting the good balls for singles and punishing the bad balls.
We ended up with 5/262, a score that will certainly make the competition fear us. To score at over a run a ball will win you 99% of the games you play in and as a captain I could not have asked for anything more from our batting line up, especially the guys batting towards the end.
The first 20 overs with the ball was a real grind and wickets were hard to come by. Varun bowled his 8 overs upfront and had figures of 0/30, however bowled much better than that. Matt Lambrick who came on in the 9th over bowled his 8 overs straight as well with figures of 2/30 and was the pick of the bowlers. He was given a simple game plan and never deviated from that, a real team game from him which is what we need in division 4.
Devo bowled an excelled 2nd spell towards the end at finished with 3/39 off his 7 overs whilst Reidy was honest with his 4 overs 1/22. Nixon and King bowled really well in the middle overs with figures of 1/15 (5) and 1/16 (6) respectively. The seam bowlers really set the game up for them to try and draw out some shots but they bowled well enough that those shots never really came. Sam Bakker bowled 2 late overs with figures of 1/11.
Overall a pretty good performance. I was impressed with our intensity in the field and our fielding despite a few dropped catches. We need to work on converting those chances and that is something I am sure the club will be working on as a whole this weekend. We have a lot of players to come back over the next few weeks so I have asked that everyone train as often as possible to make it hard for those guys to get back in and to basically keep doing the right things. Next up we have Lysterfield, who last year won division 4. We will attack them with everything we have an I am confident we can come away with the win and the perfect start to the season.
4th XI vs Upwey Tecoma @ Wantirna Reserve
First up we had Upwey Tecoma that finished top of the ladder
last year so we knew that it would be an interesting game and we were going to
have to show up and play our best cricket to walk away with the win.
We were one player down and another player had to leave
early so we had to bat first to make the most of the players we had. We won the
toss thankfully and chose to bat first.
The grass wasn’t mowed at Wantirna college as it was school
holidays so we knew we wouldn’t get as much value out of our shots as usual.
Ben Marget and Deepak Puri saw us through the first 13 odd overs where scoring
was slow before Deepak despatched a full toss straight to the fielder and we
lost our first wicket with score on 10 odd. We then lost constant wickets until
Porno and Tom Wylde combined for a 40-odd run partnership before Porno was very
unlucky to be caught by a diving catch. Tom Wylde and Jackson Crawford then
added another 30 runs together before he was dismissed and myself and Tommy put
on 16 in the last over to have us finish up on 6/108.
In reply myself and Porno opened the bowling. They were
lucky with a couple of catches going through the slips and one falling short as
well as another catch being missed. Porno managed to get the opener to sky one
and we had them 1/12. A few overs later I bowled the other opener out and had
them 2/28. Unfortunately, that’s where they decided to take on our bowlers and
go at everything. Gregor got a caught and bowled and there 3rd
wicket fell with them on 48 and from there they passed our score with 20 overs
to spare. A lot of the bowlers not having done any pre-season training and
being a bowler down didn’t help things for us, however we did what we could.
All in all, it was a tough match and not the result we were
looking for, however it was the first game of the season and I’m confident that
with the return of some players and fielding a full side that we will be
competitive this season once again.