With torrential rain hitting Sydney it was a miracle that any play occurred throughout the grades.

All Premier teams took the field for the first time in 2020-21 to face Northern District, while the Metros faced off against Hawkesbury and North West Sydney and a total of 15 players debuted for Randwick Petersham.

1s, 4s, 5s and Metro Green finished with draws and 2s and 3s finished on the other side of the ledger. But way out west Metro Gold arrived to blue skies at Bensons Lane and took the win.

Lefand Group 1st Grade @ Coogee Oval 

Result: Randwick Petersham 2-157 (32 overs) J Seymour 64* A Sams 43 W Affleck 33 drew Northern District

Scorecard link

Unfortunately not much to report again this weekend due to poor weather conditions, but there were still some positives to take out of the day.

Batting first, we got off to a great start with Will Affleck the first man to depart on 33. Anthony Sams must’ve had an early date night planned, as he didn’t waste time out in the middle smashing 43 off 34. He put on a great partnership with James Seymour who continued his great form with 64, as the heavens opened up after 30 overs. After a few hours throwing around some (average) banter in the change rooms, we went back out to face 2 more overs and ended our innings on 2-157. That was all she wrote as we had yet another drawn game this season.

Daya Singh (c)

Suttons City Rosebery 2nd Grade @ Petersham Oval 

Result: Randwick Petersham 72 J Wood 18 (21.4 overs) def by Northern District 126 (41.3 overs) A Burton 4-15 M O’Loughlin 2-21

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Randwick Petersham suffered a poor loss to Northern Districts after collapsing to be all out for 72 chasing 126.
Winning the toss and bowling first, the Randy Petes didn’t claim their first wicket until the score reached 29. However, a procession of wickets followed with two each to both Jamie Hemphrey (2-36) and Mitch O’Loughlin (2-21) along with a four piece to Ashley Burton (4-15) along with a run out for the side’s fittest man saw us have them 8-71 before rearguard action and a rain delay helped them scrape to 126.

4 for Ash Burton

While the wicket became a bit more lively after covers were forced to be left off due to the thunderstorm, a performance not befitting of the quality in our lineup saw us all bundled out in 22 overs, still over 50 in arrears of their score.
While putting ourselves in multiple opportunities to win games this year without being successful, a win next weekend against Penriff will be crucial.
Jackson Eldridge (c)

Petersham RSL 3rd Grade @ Mark Taylor Oval

Result: Randwick Petersham 4-44 (15.3 overs) def by Northern District 8-221 (50 overs) B Montedoro 3-58 M Mariguddi 2-27

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With the wet weather playing havoc around Sydney during the week 3s were given a late upgrade at the departure gate to business class with a ground change from Asquith Oval to Mark Taylor Oval. As the covers were peeled back much to the delight of both captains, it was evident that the groundsman had done an excellent job during the week against the odds to prepare a great pitch. Stand in Skipper Jaya Murdita working on the proviso that tails never fails in NSW called correctly and elected to bowl first, looking to take advantage of a pitch that had been under covers all week and the fact that some wet weather was predicted in the afternoon.


And take advantage we did with debutants Mandar Marguddi (2-27 off 10) and Sadeep Deepak (2-46 off 10) bowling with great control and patience, drawing some rash strokes from the Rangers top order batsman as the RPsqueeze was applied early doors. Once Akhter “Hollywood” Hussain (1-30 off 8) trapped the Rangers opening stick plumb in front for 31, the Rangers only sign of early resistance was trudging off and the men from the North were reeling at 4-59 in the 20th over with RPC well on top.

As the deck started to flatten out some experienced and smart batting was to the fore as the Rangers Skipper Waters (53) and Hayward (91) combined for a rescue mission that swung the momentum of the game back in the Rangers favor. Ben “monte” Montedoro (3-58 off 10) halted the Rangers charge holding a mortgage on the Leisure Centre end of Mark Taylor Oval for the last 20 overs of the Rangers innings as he rolled out 10 overs of quality right arm straight breaks at the death in true Monte style.

8-221 after 50 overs about par for the course on a good batting pitch with a fast outfield after a bowling innings fluctuating fortunes. The job ahead of us with the bat, with the game evenly poised after a flurry of late wickets. Youngster Lachy Bird in his first game of 3s for the club did an exceptional job behind the stumps finishing with a catch and an excellent stumping. Honourable mention to Kel Mullins who was doing his best Magneto impression as the rock followed him to all parts of Mark Taylor Oval, taking 3 catches in the process. A special mention to our bowling attack who bowled with great discipline only bowling 4 wides in our innings. Our attitude, commitment and energy in the field was also outstanding.

Unfortunately, after the adjournment for lunch we wilted under the pressure of the Rangers early onslaught as we lost quick wickets in what was a far from ideal start to our batting innings. A poor 45 minutes with the stick placed us in a precarious position, reduced to 4-44 after 15.3 with only young gun Reuben Sachs (14) and Monte (12*) reaching double figures as the weather closed in. Lightning strikes meant we were unable to put the covers on before the predicted rain arrived putting an end to any hopes of a rescue mission, unfortunately meaning we would go down via the Duckworth Lewis method. A special thanks must go to Antony Sachs for his work on the book and his support throughout the day. All in all, it was an encouraging performance to start the season and with a young side open to plenty improvement an exciting season lies ahead for 3s.

Jaya Murdita (c)

Mellick Wealth Management 4th Grade @ Kensington Oval 

Result: Randwick Petersham 1-8 (3.5 overs) drew Northern District 5-130 (38.2 overs) W Deller 2-11

Scorecard link

In the first game of the season, it would have been really nice to get some good weather. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, with a heap of rain around Kenso robbing us of any chance of a result.

Will Deller

We were able to get some cricket in however, as the Randy Petes bowled first and started brilliantly. Will Deller (2-11 off 6) continues to prove that he is a player of the future, bowling with great poise and picking up two key wickets early. He was well-supported by debutant Sanjiv Dubey (1-22 off 7) and Freddy Whalebone (1-27 off 8) with the ball, as the hosts restricted NDs to 5-130 from 38 overs.

On resumption, the Randy Petes were sent into bat with a revised total of 136 from 29 overs. Unfortunately after just four overs, rain and lightning struck again and that ended the day.

The boys will now travel to Penrith in a bid to get their first win of the season on Saturday.

Liam O’Loughlin (c)

Clovelly Community Bank Branch Bendigo Bank 5th Grade @ Asquith Oval 

Result: Randwick Petersham 8-110 (34 overs) F Heaton 39 def by Northern District 6-220 (50 overs cc) S Suresh 3-34 S Sandhu 2-46

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NDs decided to bat on a deck which was soft underneath and could assist the bowlers in the first 10 overs. The outfield looked like it would get faster as the day progressed with the grass cut low.

The Randy Petes medium pacers were advised to bowl just on or outside off, back of a length and let the wicket do the rest. For the spinners they needed to keep the ball up and nothing short as the wicket was slow and they could get cut or pulled.

Medium pacers Alan Mathews (0-51 off 9), Simran Sandhu (2-46 off 9) and Adam Coombs (0-35 off 7) started off well and contained the ND’s to under 50 in the first 17 overs. Simran snared the 1st wicket with an impressive low caught and bowled.

On a spin friendly track Pratulya Kashyap (0-29 off 10), Sriram Suresh (3-34 off 10) and Max Robinson (1-23 off 5) bowled exceptionally well. Sriram was at his best and deserved a 5 wicket haul with some balls turning almost at right angles.

However, from the 40th over the ND’s accelerated and took on our medium pacers to reach 220. Alan was unlucky to not take 2 wickets in the 2nd death spell. Also, full credit to Sriram who was given the ball to bowl the 50th over when  both ND batsmen were in full flight and they could only manage 3 runs.

Fabs Heaton

When batting RPCC unfortunately were 5 wickets down in under 12 overs. Suresh (19) was the only batsman in the top order to reach double figures, while the skipper Fabian Heaton (39) and PK (15) tried to up the ante and get to a respectable target. But consistent bowling from ND’s denied any chance of getting to 150+.

At 8 down for 110 in the 34th over the game was called off due to rain and bad light with the Randy Petes losing on DLS.

I’m looking forward to the team doing a lot better in the next game and the ones to follow. We have many good young players in the side who unfortunately did not come good this game.

Fabian Heaton (c)

Titan Fitness Metro Gold @ Benson’s Lane 3

Result: Randwick Petersham 4-95 (35.5 overs) G Chandar 35* Y Wanzare 21* def Hawkesbury 94 (36.1 overs) T Gowda 3-11 A Bhat 3-18 G Chandar 2-11

Scorecard link

A week of atrocious weather and the nervous anticipation of the first game of the season were not helped by the waterfall of rain that greeted the Gold tourists on their journey out of Sydney to the Richmond lowlands to take on Hawkesbury. All thoughts of a rough draw first up dissipated though, as the clouds parted and the sun shone through along Richmond Road. Despite the amount of water received, the pitch was hard and dry but the outfield still heavy. With plenty of humidity in the air and chance of rain, there was no hesitation in choosing to bowl first when given the opportunity – giving players the chance to settle their nerves quickly.

Scott Tucker on debut had the pace and carry to create chances and was unlucky after fellow debutant, Guru Chandar, got parallel to the ground and put down a catch/saved four runs. From the other end, Charith De Silva did what Charith De Silva (2-28) does; create unrelenting pressure through accuracy and movement in the air – which was telling our first breakthrough. After one opener was dropped off a skier, his partner didn’t learn from the event two balls later and fell trying the same. Fellow debutant, Ashish Bhat (3-18), then cut a swathe through the top order – with three wickets in three overs. Just as the batsmen thought they could get away the release delivery to escape from his wicked reverse swing, an excellent fielding effort complemented the bowling with sharp catches to Daany Saeed, John Stewart and Damian Sidney. Spin then took control of the match as Guru came back and dropped everything on a dime, while Thanush Gowda (3-11) showed his progress from last year, as the final five batsmen all battled against tight lines and tighter fielding – including a diving one-handed catch from Stewart at slip – only to give it away when they needed to stay. Of the ten dismissals in a total of 94, nine Hawks batsmen were out caught. While it would have been easy for the players to be distracted from the week’s rain, it was impressive to see them focussed and ready on the field, paying testament to work put in during the preseason.

While the bowling and fielding efforts were strong, this was still not an easy pitch to bat on. Alan Xu looked on song before a lifter ended his stay, while Sean Rushton and Yogesh Wanzare looked to see off the impressive opening and first change bowlers. Progress was slow and wickets uncomfortably falling at regular intervals – with the score 4-32 at the 20 over mark leaving a few jitters on the sidelines. However, the gambit from the Hawks to cook their strike bowlers early didn’t quite work out for them, as Yogesh (21*) showed the benefit of playing time and Guru (35*) chanced his hand (literally, with a few lives along the way) to first steady the ship then cash in against the later string bowlers. As the target approached, the Hawks lost their footing on the throat and the Gold team passed the target with 14 overs and 6 wickets in the shed, as well as 10 minutes to spare before the rain hit. A consummate team effort and a bonus point win made the drive back down Richmond Road that much more satisfying.

A beautiful day at Benson’s Lane

Cartwright Insurance Metro Green @ Petersham Oval

Result: Randwick Petersham drew North West Sydney 0-18 (5.2 overs) 

Scorecard link

While the Green team were excited to have Metropolitan Cup return to Petersham Oval, the anticipation of the blue sky and sunshine that greeted the drive to the ground gave way to anxiety as the grey clouds rolled in. Several passing showers delayed the start until both teams decided to take off the covers and see what they were dealing with. After a bit of prep and warm-up, play got under way at 11:30. Unfortunately, 3 delays within the first five overs and the consistent rain saw both teams agree that it would be best to try again another day. Unfortunately, with a bye scheduled next round, the Green team will have to wait until the following week to reach the field proper.

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