This round we take on an old foe in Sydney University in a two-day match for all five grades in what is forecast to be record heatwave temperatures. We’ve had some battles with Uni. over recent seasons and this won’t be any different as they’re going pretty well and are in the top few in the Club Championship as well as the leaders in 1st and 3rd Grade. They certainly have had the better end of the pineapple over the past 10 seasons winning 28.5 to our 19.5 (4ths had a tie in 2007-08) with 3 draws in 51 matches. They are likely to have a couple of players in the Shield match at the SCG this weekend.

This round we take on an old foe in Sydney University in a two-day match for all five grades in what is forecast to be record heatwave temperatures. We’ve had some battles with Uni. over recent seasons and this won’t be any different as they’re going pretty well and are in the top few in the Club Championship as well as the leaders in 1st and 3rd Grade. They certainly have had the better end of the pineapple over the past 10 seasons winning 28.5 to our 19.5 (4ths had a tie in 2007-08) with 3 draws in 51 matches. They are likely to have a couple of players in the Shield match at the SCG this weekend.


Now would be a good time to even up the ledger as we could use the Club Championship points. We are now 764 and in 11th place where we have been since 17 December! Uni. are on 1,111 in 4th place. We are 89 from 9th spot (Mosman) and 80 from 10th (Easts) which should be our targets if we are to make the top 10. Finishing in the top 5 is out of the question as that is over 300 points ahead of us.

1st GRADE is at Coogee Oval: Our 12 matches: WWDWWLLWWLWD: This is the match of the round. Uni. are on top of the comp this season with 61 points with us on 43 in 6th place. They also have the best quotient t (1.9092) while we have second best (1.2224). We are still the leading run-scorer in the competition with 3,654 while Uni. are second with 3,541. In the past 10 seasons we have won 7 to Uni.’s 8 with two of their wins coming in Grand Finals. This is likely to be a batting bonanza. Whoever can bowl out the other side will probably win the match. Nick Warren makes a welcome return to 1st Grade replacing Greg West who is injured. Shaun Eaton plays week 1 while Nathan Price, who is playing in the National Indigenous Cricket Championships in Alice Springs returns for week 2. And speaking about Nathan Price, what about him hitting his second ton in a row last week and belting 9 sixes in the process! That effort matches Simon Katich’s 9 sixes in his knock of 177 at Petersham Oval (ironically also against Mosman) in 2002-03. And to top it off, the final number of sixes in the team’s total of 8-374 declared was 15! Anthony Sams is creeping closer to the magic 1,000 runs target. He now has 896.

2nd GRADE is at Sydney Uni. 1: Our 12 matches: LLDLWLWWWWLL: Last week’s loss all but cruelled our chances this season leaving us in 15th place some 14 points out of a finals berth. Uni. however, are only one win in front of us so a good chance to get something back for the pain they have dished out to us in the past 15 years. We have only ever beaten them twice and in the past 10 seasons just once while they have won 8 times. Beating them on their turf would also be sweet. James Tyson has 195 2nd Grade wickets—just 5 short of the magic 200.

3rd GRADE plays at Petersham Oval: Our 12 matches: WLLLTLWWDLWL: How close last week!! We should have beaten the 2nd placed team instead of going down on the last ball of the match. And it doesn’t get easier as this week’s opponent Sydney Uni. is the leader! We are now 15 points out of 4th place and would need a bit of a cricketing miracle to make the finals. But stranger things have happened. Uni. have beaten us 6 to 2 in this grade. Everything is stacked against us but maybe that’s just the challenge to spur on our boys!

4th GRADE is at St Paul’s Oval, Sydney Uni.: Our 12 matches: WWLLLLWWLWWW: The boys brought up the hat-trick last weekend and there’s no reason why they can’t continue on their winning way as they march towards the finals. Historically there hasn’t been much between the sides with us holding a narrow win advantage: 4.5 to 3.5. And on the points ladder there’s very little difference—we are 7th on 44 and they are 8th on 43. We also are just 6 points (one win) from St George in 3rd place. This is an important match.

5th GRADE plays at Kensington: Our 12 matches: WWLL (LWO) (LWO) (WLO) WLLLW: A brilliant win in defending a meagre total of 86 last Saturday and a fitting outcome for skipper Nigil Singh who brought up 450 wickets with Randwick Petersham—the first to achieve that milestone. Our 5s have beaten Sydney Uni. 5 times and lost on 3 occasions with 2 draws in the past 10 years. We are 8th on 40 points just 4 points from 3rd place so we can’t afford any more losses. Uni. are 12th on 31.

1st Grade LIMITED OVERS CUP SEMI-FINAL: We play HAWKESBURY at Coogee Oval THIS SUNDAY 12 FEBRUARY FROM 10 am and we would like EVERYONE to be there to cheer on our boys as they attempt to win a place in the Grand Final on Sunday 26 February. PLEASE TAKE NOTE OF THE DAY AND BE THERE! We have played Hawkesbury 15 times in our history for 11 wins and just 4 losses. We have won the last 4 matches. But they are going well this season with 6 wins and are one of the leading run-scoring teams. They can’t be taken easy and we will need to play to our best to keep our great record against them intact.

Metropolitan Cup from Jeremy Jastrzab: A disappointing Round 12 finished with a narrow thriller on the wrong side for Gold, and a debilitating experience in the western heat for Green. But with a new round, comes new opportunities. Both teams season’s come full circle as they take on familiar opponents from the early rounds. Gold head back to the excitable short boundaries of Bland Oval to take on Georges River, again. In round 1, the Golds got their season off to a rollicking start with a double bonus point win, and with a tight race for finals coming up, the Golds need the win to stay in it. Green take on their opponents from round 2, Mosman at their home in Balmoral. Last week, 5s battled to a low scoring win, so only the cricket Gods know what awaits the two teams as they arrive on Saturday morning. The winner of that match claws their way further off the bottom of the table.

Lyall Gardner

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