Season 2016-17: Round 1 Preview v Fairfield-Liverpool

Welcome! Welcome! Welcome—one and all to another fantastic season of Randwick Petersham Cricket!

Welcome! Welcome! Welcome—one and all to another fantastic season of Randwick Petersham Cricket!And have we got a great season ahead! Strong teams, enthusiastic players, dedicated volunteers and of course, devoted followers and supporters. It’s great to be a part of it! And the good thing is—it all starts THIS SATURDAY!

All grades will play a one-day limited overs match (50 overs a side) against Fairfield-Liverpool. In fact, the second match the following Saturday is the same although we will play Western Suburbs which will have former Aussie captain Michael Clarke in its line-up.

And a BIG WELCOME to new players. GREG WEST a left-arm fast bowler who played for the Adelaide Strikers in the Big Bash comp. makes his debut with us as 1st Grade capped player no. 106. PAT McGANN a left-arm quick and a NSW Country Under 19 squad member joins us as does MATT EVERETT a wicket-keeper batsman from Tamworth, JOE HART a leg-spinner who is also in the NSW Country Under19 side and still at school, SAM MACKAY a right hand high order bat and off spinner from Brisbane while high order bat ANDREW BALBERNIE is with us under the RPC-Cricket Ireland Scholarship program. We also have a host of new players in our lower grades line-ups and we say g’day and welcome to CHRIS KING from the Central Coast, DOUGLAS LOTH a fast bowler from the Briars club in Shires, MATT CALDER an Illawarra rep player from the South Coast and high order bat and leg spinner, DYLAN POWELL an opening bat who is in the A W Green Shield side and CHRIS HART an opening bat from Briars club. There are also a great number of new faces in our Metro Cup teams who are listed below and we say welcome one and all. We are sure all of you will enjoy playing with Randwick Petersham. It’s also welcome back to DAVE MITCHELL and MATT HILDER two “veterans” who add many years of experience to our lower grades. Great to see Dave and Matt back in the Randy Pete colours!!

And it’s goodbye and good luck to Jack Preddey (Cumberland) and Adam Docos (North Sydney) who have joined other clubs while Chris Singh and Alex Sciascia enter into well-earned retirement. Thanks for contribution to the club and especially in the case of Chris and Alex who have served so well for the past 15 years.

FIRST ROUND RECORD: In our 15 seasons we have achieved a fantastic record in the first game of a season. In the 75 matches covering the five grades we have won 45 with one tie, lost 21 and drawn 8. 3rd Grade has the best record winning the first game 11 times followed by 5ths with 10, 1sts with 9 and a tie, 2nds with 8 and 4th Grade with 7 from 15. Last year rain interfered with three matches drawn. Let’s hope we can improve that record this Saturday!

1st GRADE is at Coogee Oval: Alex Kemp will captain the First XI for the first time following Adam Semple’s decision to stand down from the role after four seasons. Jake Wilson is recovering from a successful season in the UK while Greg West, as mentioned above, makes his Sydney Grade Cricket and club debut. He will add plenty of spice to the attack in an otherwise unchanged unit from last season. We have played Fairfield Liverpool 17 times since 2001-02 with 7 wins, one tie, 6 losses and 3 draws. The tie came about in 2010-11 when their last man was run out of the last ball of the 50 overs-a-side match to finish the game with 167 each. We were 11th and they were 14th last season. Our ambition remains the 1st Grade Belvidere Cup. With three runners-up prizes, a third place once and fourth twice, we have been knocking on the door for years and our time can’t be far off. Let’s hope this is our year!

2nd GRADE is at Rosedale Oval, Warwick Farm: Tom Holland will captain the side this season and we wish him well. He has a great looking unit which could be a real force this season. There are four players new to the side and the club—Pat McGann, Matt Everett, Joe Hart and Andrew Balnernie. Their progress of the team this season will hold much interest. We were 13th and Fairfield-Liverpool were 17th last season. Last season we lost to them upsetting a 5 game winning sequence. The teams have clashed 13 times with us winning 8 to their 3 with 2 draws.

3rd GRADE plays at Petersham Oval: If ever a side had “premiership” written all over it on paper, this is it! An extremely strong outfit, particularly in bowling, skipper Rod Stafford with 500 Grade Cricket wickets under his belt will be lucky to get a bowl! The side also sees the club debut of Sam Mackay and the team includes Jack James, the vice-captain of our A W Green Shield team last season and an outstanding talent. His batting average of 56.75 in that competition last season broke Usman Khawaja’s club record, underlining his potential. We were 6th last season and Fairfield-Liverpool were 11th. Over the years, we have played them 12 times for 5 wins, 4 losses and 3 draws. They have beaten us the last two seasons so it’s time to turn the tables.

4th GRADE is at Fairfield Oval: David Bourke leads the side in his 232nd game for the club and his 153rd in 4th Grade. Last year was a shocker finishing 18th. However, Fairfield-Liverpool finished behind us in 20th and last spot. Chris King, Douglas Loth and Matt Calder are new to the side while David Mitchell who has played 126 matches with the club and scored almost 3,500 runs makes a welcome come-back. In the 13 matches in which the two teams have met, Fairfield has the advantage with 6 wins to our 4 with 3 draws. Our last defeat of them was 6 seasons ago in 2010-11. We are DUE!!

5th Grade plays at Kensington Oval: With 414 wickets and 210 matches for the club and an overall Grade Cricket record of 484 wickets and 251 games, Nigil Singh takes over the captaincy. In a side chockful of young talent, they are joined by new players Dylan Powell and Chris Hart. Matt Hilder, who has 4,131 runs and 203 wickets for the club in 220 matches, didn’t play last summer and makes a welcome return. You can’t beat experience and Matt has plenty of that to rub off onto the youngsters. Sam Boyns who did so well last season in Metro Cup is back from his home in the UK and keen to go around again. We finished 12th last season and Fairfield 17th. In 14 matches we have beaten them 8 times with 2 draws and 4 losses. They won last year.

Metropolitan Cup from Jeremy Jastrzab
It wasn’t just the breeze across Snape Park last weekend that created a spine-tingling sensation, it was the heralding in of the new cricket season. And having worked hard since June, the Randwick Petersham Metropolitan Cup players are rarin’ to go one better than their runner-up position in last year’s competition with one of the strongest squads we have had in years. The Randy Petes PR machine has been in overdrive, bringing in a stream of youngsters and players who have been around. On behalf of the club we’d like to welcome: Abbey Bhavsar, Chintan Sapariya, Alex Deller, Mackenzie Waugh, Apollo Papathanasiou, Peter Andonopoulos, Syed Omar Warisi, Zade Murphy, Dev Kaushal, Jordan Marsden, Pratulya Kashyap, Sreeni Gonguntla, Sanjay Anandarajah, Reuben Sachs and Oscar Sachs.

This season sees a return to a 10 team competition with the sorry exits for Sydney, Hawkesbury and one of the UNSW teams. Players were especially disappointed to hear that they won’t be doing the Bensons Lane road trip this season. In place of these teams we welcome Eastern Suburbs who saw their 6th place finish in the Tim Creer Cup as sufficient to making a Metro appearance. Fingers crossed to draw a game at Waverley Oval or an ‘away’ fixture at Snape Park.

This season looks like it will contain a much more even split between Saturdays and Sundays, with rounds one and two giving us a Saturday and Sunday game each. John Stewart takes the reigns again for the ‘Golden Boys’ who begin their campaign at Bland Oval this Saturday, the scene of a 1 wicket thriller last November. Aside from getting off to a winning start and taking revenge, a few of the player will no doubt be aiming for a few of the passing cars on the M5. Alexis ‘Launnie’ Coovre leads a mix of the stalwarts and ‘green’ players at the idyllic Petersham Oval on Sunday against Sydney University. There aren’t too many left over from the Marrickville massacre of January 2016, leaving a fresh contest for both teams.

Golf: Just a quick note to advise that this year’s Phil Tresidder Memorial Golf Day has not been finalised as yet. We are trying to get a Sunday as our regular Friday date was becoming a bit too difficult for people to get time off work and the like. Stay tuned.

Best of luck to everyone for the 2016-17 season. Go the Randy Petes!!

Lyall Gardner

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