Lyall’s Preview Round 12 v Manly-Warringah & Round 11 Metro Cup v Fairfield-Liverpool and Hawkesbury

It’s good to be back in winning form!  A good weekend against Sutherland saw wins in 1st, 3rd and 4th grades while 5ths went down in a record low score of 60 and 2nds lost on the last ball of the match (for the second time this season). In Metro we did well with a win and a rain-affected draw. Our Poidevin-Gray premiership team also kept the flag flying in the division semi-final last Sunday with a great win over Manly-Warringah who had beaten up in round 3. The division final is Sunday week against UTS North Sydney (who beat us in round 5) at Bon Andrews Oval (North Sydney no. 2). The winner proceeds to the Grand Final against the winner of the other division on Sunday 10 March. Unfortunately, our A W Green Shield under 16 boys went down on Sunday against Parramatta and again on Tuesday playing Fairfield-Liverpool in a rain-affected match.

We picked up two places in the Club Championship last weekend moving from 15th to 13th. Still not as good as we would like but at least we are moving in the right direction. While we are 104 points behind 10th placed Bankstown, we are just 20 from Penrith in 11th. We are up against second-placed Manly-Warringah this weekend in a series of two-day matches and they will be a tough nut to crack. Hopefully our PGs win against them on Sunday is the start of a winning streak.

ANTHONY SAMS ON THE EDGE OF HISTORY:

Last Saturday, 1st Grade wicketkeeper Anthony Sams, was presented with just one catching opportunity. That gave him 499 1st Grade dismissals. It will be history in the making when he snares just one more to give him the coveted 500.  Association historians will have their pens poised to enter his name in the record books as only the second wicketkeeper to reach such a milestone and the first in 68 years! Go Anthony!

Round 12 v Manly-Warringah (all 2-day matches)

1st Grade is @ Manly: We have won 11 of the last 13 clashes with the Waratahs. If we are to be a force in this season’s Belvidere Cup, we need to keep that winning record going. They are 3rd on 39 points and we are 10th on 31–just 8 behind. It’s a tight leaderboard and we can’t afford another loss. Nice to see Riley Ayre pass the 3,500 runs milestone last weekend.

2nd Grade is @ Coogee: The side has lost its last two games on the last ball. Surely the tide must turn!  And the big incentive for fast bowler Mitchell O’Loughlin is that he needs just one wicket for 100 in 2nd Grade. He will become just the third 2nd Grade bowler for us to reach the century behind Rodney Stafford (232) and James Tyson (196).

3rd Grade is @ Graham Reserve: It’s hard to believe that last weekend’s win in round 11 was the sides’ first since round 3. Interestingly, they have started with a century partnership in each of the last 3 matches. Ross Elliot has been in each! Manly is 4th and we are 13th.

4th Grade is @ Petersham: Like 3s, this team’s win last weekend was its first since round 3. Manly are leading the comp with 9 wins out of 11. Our last win against them was in 2016-17. Time to correct the records.

5th Grade is @ Mike Pawley: Last week’s 60 was our lowest score against Sutherland. Previous low was139 in 2006-07. The talent is much better than that. Manly is 2nd and we are 13th.

Our METROPOLITAN CUP matches this weekend are 2-day fixtures from midday Saturday. RPC Gold play Fairfield-Liverpool at Don Dawson while RPC Green play Hawkesbury at Snape.

GO THE RANDY PETES!!!

Lyall Gardner OAM

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