NSW Premier Cricket 1st Grade Semi Final v Mosman 2021-22 Preview

From the start of the 1921-22 season–100 years ago–the Sydney 1st Grade competition was expanded from 12 clubs to 16. The new entrants were Randwick, Marrickville, Mosman and St George. This weekend in the 1st Grade semi-final, three of those clubs will be represented in a battle for a position in the Grand Final the following week. The old Randwick and Marrickville clubs, in the form of Randwick Petersham, will play Mosman at Allan Border Oval, Mosman, from 10 am this Saturday and Sunday. Interestingly, the fourth new entrant a century ago–St George–played Mosman in the drawn qualifying final last weekend.

Apart from the historic nature of the match, the big question is, as it has been the past four weekends, will the weather be a major factor in the game playing out? The forecast is not good and as the annual rainfall has already fallen in many parts of Sydney, many fingers will need to be crossed.

Despite the shortened season due to the COVID pandemic and the weather, this will be the third time the teams have clashed this season. The Whales won the first round of the season at Allan Border in convincing fashion, 2-198 to 8-194 (50 overs), after former Australian ODI star, Peter Forrest, belted 84* off just 81 balls. They also beat us at Petersham in a round of the Twenty20 Cup which we went on to win, 7-145 to 143. Hopefully, this weekend will be our turn. Both teams lost only two matches in the 17 rounds of the Belvidere Cup this season.

Jason Ralston

Over the 20 seasons prior to this one, we played Mosman on 26 occasions in 1st Grade, winning 14, losing 7 with 5 drawn. Our record at Allan Border Oval is 3 wins, one loss and 2 draws from 6 games–a handy record at an “away” venue.

This will be the 7th time we have contested a semi-final with our record standing at one win, 3 losses and 2 draws from 6 games. No finals were played when we won the Belvidere Cup in 2019-20.

Mosman’s best performers this season include Peter Forrest, who has scored 694 runs including 121* against St George last weekend, Harry Dalton with 414 and former Randy Pete, Matt Calder, with 391.

Our leading batter is Anthony Sams with 714, who also brought up a career record of 7,000 1st Grade runs last Sunday. Next to him is Camden Hawkins who has made 561 while Riley Ayre has scored 491, Adam Semple 481, Will Affleck 322 and Daya Singh 248.

Anthony Sams and cordon

In the bowling, for us, Adam Semple has 35 wickets, Jason Ralston 33, Daya Singh 28 (at just 16.9 each) while spinners Riley Ayre and Ryan Ninan have each taken 19. For the Whales, Elijah Eales is the leader with 31 wickets followed by Matt Moran 30, Dean Crawford 28, Jake Turner 27 and Jayden Park 18.

The Randwick Petersham 1st Grade squad is: Daya Singh (Captain), Will Affleck, Camden Hawkins, Riley Ayre, Anthony Sams, Adam Docos, Adam Semple, Ben Mitchell, Basit Ali, Ryan Ninan, Jason Ralston, Puru Gaur, Ash Burton, Shivansh Pathak.  Final XI to be determined on morning of the match.

Ben Mitchell

And huge congratulations are in order for Jason Sangha. Firstly, for being appointed captain of the NSW team in its Sheffield Shield match against South Australia in Adelaide this week and secondly, for leading as a captain should, with a magnificent century! Jason is the club’s second NSW captain after Simon Katich.

The other semi-final is between minor premiers Northern District and 4th placed Manly-Warringah at Pratten Park. The winners of both semi-finals will meet in the Grand Final over 3 days starting Friday 1 April. If the weather intervenes and the semis are both drawn, Northern District and Mosman will meet in the Grand Final. For Randwick Petersham to get there, we have to win.

LIVE STREAMING: If you can’t get to Allan Border Oval at Mosman, you can watch the match through Cricket NSW Match Centre click here:

Go the Randy Petes!!

Lyall Gardner OAM

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