Last year we won all five grades against Uni. of NSW. Can we do it again?  We certainly need to with some disappointing results lately. With just two matches to go we do not have a team in the top 6 in any grade! IN OUR 15 SEASONS WE HAVE NEVER MISSED OUT ON HAVING A TEAM IN THE FINALS! Let’s hope this is not the season that happens for the first time.

 

Club Championship: It’s quite amazing to think we have slipped 152 points further behind the leader Penrith in the past two rounds yet have only dropped two places from 8th to 10th! Penrith have 1,161 and we have 842—319 behind which is the most we have been all season. It is now virtually impossible to finish in the top 5 and the top 10 should be the target with just the two rounds to go. Uni. NSW are 15th—95 points behind us.

1st GRADE is at Village Green: With no points in our last two games, making the top 6 with two matches left is going to be a struggle. But it can be done. We are now 9th one win (6 points) out of 6th. We have beaten Uni. 9 times in the past 12 games and have an overall margin of 13 wins to 5 in the 18 times we have met. And although they are 16th on the ladder this season they are the second highest run-scoring team with 3,812—only Easts with 3,869 have more. We have 3,480. We need a BIG WIN!

2nd GRADE is at Coogee: While we are on 36 points and two wins out of the top six, you never know! An outright and a bonus point or two to finish and we could make it. Uni. however, are one of two teams on 48 so we HAVE to win. Historically they have a one win margin 7 to 6. A great win last week. Obviously Robin Gardner’s arvo tea did the trick!

3rd GRADE plays at David Phillips South: This team is the BIG MOVER!  We are 10th but only 7 points from 4th. Uni. are one of those ahead but only by 3 points. Like 2nd Grade this is a MUST WIN MATCH. Historically its 6 wins apiece. Go you good things!!

4th GRADE is at Petersham: It’s been a long season for our 4s with just 3 wins and in 16th place. Uni. haven’t done much better however, being in 14th spot with 4 wins. We have won 7 to their 5 over the years. Should be an even contest.

5th GRADE plays at David Phillips North: We are 8th on 36 but only 6 points from 4th place. We blotted our copybook last week but a chance to rally here as Uni. is 17th on 18. We have won 10 out of 12 clashes over the years against them. A real chance to get back in the top 6.

Metropolitan Cup from Jeremy Jastrzab: Following on from their most successful (and nerve wrecking) weekend of the season, both teams are primed to finish the season with a bang. With a finals spot unequivocally sealed, Gold have a two day rematch with Metro front runners, Penrith, on a Kensington pitch that will hopefully be less spiteful than during their last encounter. Currently occupying second spot on the ladder, a win would almost certainly sew up a home semi-final. With the talismanic Paul Lawson returning to Ireland, a number of younger players have a chance to fill the breach in what is shaping to be a perfect warm up for finals cricket. Green took it to the wire to notch their second win of the season last week, and have an ideal opportunity to climb off the bottom of the ladder against Blacktown. The Westies come back to Snape after being lucky to escape with a draw against Gold in round 7. Green have settled on a solid combination, having been greatly balanced by the inclusion of Raj Chaudhary’s all-round capabilities, while Sean Rushton and Saurov Barua have hit form to complement the ever-steady Adam Lee.

 

Lyall Gardner

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