A great bounce back from Manly this weekend highlighted by a couple of great T20 games at Manly Oval with 1st grade yet again getting the points on the last ball. A great weekend for certain individuals, notably Tim Cruickshank who continued his incredible form with two blistering innings over the weekend.
Parramatta are going along solidly in 8th place in the CC so a few wins on Saturday will see us close the gap.
4 Pines Brewery Player of the Week – Tim Cruickshank
Tim is fast becoming the Greg Mail of Sydney Grade Cricket. The only difference is that the Shank is interesting to watch. Over the weekend he plundered 179 on Saturday from 170 balls with a mere twenty 4’s and seven 6’s. Thankfully that wasn’t enough for him because on Sunday against Norths he smacked 80 from 42 balls with five 4’s and seven 6’s. Yep, 100 runs in 4’s and 84 in sixes in one weekend. That’s a lifetime for some of us! This follows his most recent innings of 98 v Sydney. Is there a batter bat in Sydney right now? No. If Tim went interstate would he get a run – yep, he’d probably be in Aust A by now giving Birdy a touch up in the nets. Well done Tim!
1st Grade – Manly 3/289 from 58 overs (T Cruickshank 179, N Watkins 63, C Merchant 40no) v Parraamatta
A frustrating day for both teams on Saturday with the overnight rain causing a serious delay to the day’s proceedings, with a few wet patches meaning that whoever did win the toss was going to be in a slightly better position. Unfortunately for the Manly boys, skipper Tim Cruickshank tossed incorrectly and we were sent into bat.
Jack Ritchie has been in great form, but showed what a fickle game cricket can be by snicking the 3rd ball of the day behind without troubling the scorer. This put Tim Cruickshank and Nick Watkins together. Their contrasting styles were perfect foils for each other, and they both needed to bat well with the ball still nipping around. Watto was the picture of patience, facing 120 balls for a well made 63 and hitting 7 boundaries. After threatening a good score for a few rounds now, it was great to see Watto get amongst them.
But the star of the day was Cruickshank. He hit the ball as hard as ever and was seeing them like beachballs. It was almost as if he made a decision that anything on the stumps were to be kept out, but anything else was to be murdered through the field.
Tim and Watto put on 216 in fairly quick time until Watto fell, bringing Cameron Merchant to the crease. Nappa and Tim put on 60 in even time before Tim fell for a sublime 179 off 170 balls, including 20 boundariers and 7 maximum’s. Nappa finished with 40 NO off 45 rocks, with Ahillen Beadle on 4no.
With the rain delay, quick runs were the order of the day to put us in a position to win the game, and that is what happened, with 289 coming off only 58 overs. Hopefully that is enough runs for us to play with next week.
First Grade T20 Manly 4/179 (T Cruickshank 80, N Watkins 56no) beat Norths 5/177 (J Ritchie2/32)
A glorious day and good size crowd greeted both teams on Sunday as the Waratah’s went in search of a home Qtr Final in the T20 competition. The deck was good, outfield fast, so we were looking for some good hitting. And some good hitting we got.
Winning the toss. North Sydney batted well and piled on 177 from their 20 overs, Jack Ritchiewith 2-32 off 3 overs, Nick McLachlan with 0 for 24 off his 4, and Ahillen Beadle with 1 for 28 off his 4 being the pick of the bowlers. A big run chase was needed by the boys, but after chasing down 174 against Fairfield a few weeks previous, everyone was confident.
Ritchie and Nick Watkins put on 27 before Cubby fell for 12, but then the dynamic duo of Tim Cruickshank and Nick Watkins got together again to put together another fantastic 116 runs partnership. Tim was just brutal, with 7 sixes in his 80 runs off 42 balls. No car on Sydney Rd was safe. Many have described it as one of the best innings they had seen at Manly Oval. Watto did just what he needed to with Tim bating so well, hitting 56 off 52 balls.
Watto guided the boys home along with Mitch Cleary in what was a great win for the boys and secured a home semi on the 25th November against Campbelltown
2nd Grade – Manly 5dec 307 (B Smith 143, L Edgell 76, M Pugh 37) v Parramatta 0/2
The 2nd Grade boys rocked up to find a typical Old Kings Belta, and with some luck won the toss and elected to bat.
The day got off to a cracker with Andrew Watkins (B2) lacing a cover drive to set the tone for the rest of the day. Unfortunately Watto fell to a misguided bouncer, and in came an eager Ben ‘Smittybrah’ Smith. Joined by an in form Mitch Pugh, they got the Tah’s off to a flyer with elegant drives from Mitchy and incredible timing from Whailan. Unfortunately some tight bowling saw the dismissal of Pughma which saw a very fit Lukey Edgell come to the crease. From ball one, Bomber was smoking them out of the middle and contributed an exquisite 80 consisting of classy power-hitting.
Together Smitty and Bomb batted an entire session demoralising the Parramattian attack, and raising the score well over 250!Soon after Lukey fell, and Benny was more determined than ever to shoosh the sledging Parramatians. Such comments as “the farmer wants the strike” rang in the ears of Smitty and made him more fired up. Having toiled through some tough patches earlier on, Smitty then capitalised and deservingly brought up an incredible ton by piercing the gap at cover; unlike most players who would usually raise the bat at the cheering crowd, Smitty ran towards their captain at Mid-off pointing his bat yelling “Cop That …..” (entwined with other words) causing a scene that involved umpire intervention. The next over he hit 20 off the over which spoke much more powerfully than any words.
In the end, we amassed a total of 303 before declaring and having 4 overs at them.
Despite some terrific results this week, the job is only half done, and a great field effort is required to rack up the points. Go Manly!
3rd Grade – Manly v Parramatta 9/271 (C Little 3/48, S Gainsford 3/59)
The main grade rocked up to Atmosphere Park where a couple massive wet patches were easily noticeable on the pitch but were in areas that were not going to worry the batters. The Parramatta skipper won the toss and elected to bat even though we were probably going to have a trundle especially with the overcast conditions and green deck. The day started on a very unusual note with the bottom 5 getting their first win on the board in touch footy which was only due to blatant cheating by all players.
The Parramatta team got off to a relatively decent start with good aggressive batting by one opener and slow accumulating batting by the other opener. This all ended when Jacob was introduced into the attack and the more attacking batsman chipped one to Jordan at mid-off for about 30. The next wicket fell quickly after when Mezza got their number 3 to sky one to cover where Taylor showed his true athleticism to run from mid-off to take a great catch leaving Parramatta 2-40. After this, Parramatta started to get a roll on with a flurry of short and wide bowling seeing several boundaries being hit and swinging the momentum in their favour. A solid partnership came to an end when Genie trapped the number 5 batsman plumb in front for 34.
The opening batsman still being in at this time was scoring at a slow and patient rate but yet putting a lot of pride on his wicket. Yet again, the Parramatta team built another great partnership which saw the number 6 hitting a few bombs and the opening batsman displaying some great flicks of his legs. The attacking number 6 fell when he shanked a Ryan Farrell leggie to the cow corner boundary where young Gainsford took a long anticipated catch which left them for a well-respected 4-199. This breakthrough saw a major fight back by the Manly boys with Gainsford both slowing up the run rate and taking a few wickets here and there ending up with three well needed wickets and Genie burgling 2 more at the other end. The day finished with their tailenders blocking out the day with the final score 9-271.
In the wickets column both Genie and Gainsford ended up with 3 wickets each followed by Ryan, Mezza and Jacob all grabbing just the one wicket each. With our batting depth and the fact we can bat to 11, we feel confident that we can chase down this total.
4th Grade – Manly 179 (B Wilson 42no, B Falconer 29, W Evans 29) v Parramatta 3/30 ( R Davis 2/5, W Evans 1/5)
A much improved result from past weeks. The boys had a good chat pre game and we talked about being positive with the bat, patient with the ball and concentrate all the time and whether it was this or whatever we improved a lot. Deciding to bat on a hard wicket with a bit of grass in overcast conditions was risky but positive. Tully got another LBW (last 5 dismissals 2 bowled and 3 LBWs – ask the coach why) brought the promoted Sky to the crease to join the in form Falconer. Tom looked a million bucks till he got a tickle to leave us at 2/31. McClintock fell to a good C&B to make it 3/35. Gardiner & Falconer then hung around and played some good shots to relieve the pressure but just as we started to relax the Falcon is caught in front for a well made 29. Gardiner falls not too long after for a good 21 to make it 5/69. Verdi is striking the ball but finding no gaps, 2nd ball Evans puts the pressure on his groin, the mid off, Verdi, the keeper and the umpire with an attempted quick single. This sees Verdi into his ground by a foot but that wasn’t enough for the umpire, see ya later Ash. Just to prove I am not a complete bastard as I was hanging around I overheard the keeper say to his slips…”That wasn’t out was it?” to which the reply, “no I don’t think so”. Bad luck Ash!
Enter Ron Davis – Ron over the past 30 years hasn’t been renowned for his batting, more for being one of Sydney’s quickest opening bowlers in 1st grade circa 1987 – 1997 for Fairfield. Also managed a hattrick who were Mark, Steve and Dean Waugh. Not that Ron mentions this, I remember it. Ron batted sensibly whilst Evans (talking in the 3rd person here – will I get a run in the Fitzphiles?) was finding the middle before he topped edged one for 29 to make it 7/99. Davis bats well before another LBW for 20. Alexander and Wilson then put on a great 45 run partnership. My apologies to Sam, last week he made 6no not 0no. Anyway he continues his run of form with a well made 15. Sheedy hangs around for another 10 run partnership with Wilson to be all out for 179. So where did these extra 42 runs come from? WILSON, that’s who. Whenever #10s make runs it is usually a slog here and there etc but Wilson played an aggressive, entertaining knock mostly along the ground and mostly in the V. A great innings.
Sheedy & Verdi take the new ball. Sheedy bowls well without luck, numerous plays and misses to his outswingers at a handy pace. Verdi is not on his game early and does not find his rhythm but nevertheless the two bowl economically without luck. At 0/27 we weren’t panicking as the batsman were not showing much. Ron Davis then rolls the arm over which are soon sizzling thru to the keeper. Tom loves them so much he tried to eat a bouncer. Ouch. He picks up two knicks (2/5)and Evans, not to be out done by the old bald fart up the other end, bowls well and is unlucky to have just 1/5.
Another energetic, positive day next week will be good boys. If we are to lose this game Parramatta had better bat really well.
5th Grade – Manly 9/303 (R.Trewartha 121, J.Trickey 50, J.Garay 43) v Parramatta
5th grade arrived at Mike Pawley oval on Saturday, and found that there was some wet patches all over the pitch so it was important to win the toss and bowl first, but it didn’t turn out that way so we were sent in to bat. One of the openers looked to be in great touch before he was bowled second ball of the day therefore sending the man of the moment Rosco, who would end up getting a terrific 120 and show the boys how to bat. (also the crowd who were there to witness it as per the photo). There were some good contributions by Toby Pool and Jack Garay but a terrific little innings by James Trickey who manage to get 50 in about ten minutes was exactly what the team wanted. At the end of the days play we were 9-300 odd and looking to finish them off next weekend.
PGs – Manly 8/117 (A Lowe 45) and 1/10 lost to Nth Sydney 6/117 (M Alexander 2-22) and 0/10
The PGs boys turned up to a picturesque Manly Oval on Sunday keen to chalk up our first win after our close loss to Fairfield-Liverpool. After a great warm up assisted by the enormous and helpful Jarrod Rawlings, we were sent in on the same deck that 1st grade scored nearly 300 in 59 overs the day before, so we were optimistic of getting a good score on the board. Unfortunately, due to a combination of bad luck and poor decision making under pressure, our innings never quite got going. We lost our first two wickets early with the skipper caught at fine leg off a top edge and a highly controversial run out removing the athletic Javed Badyari with the score on only 5. Tom Kaye and Lowey batted well to steady the early jitters before another run out found Tom short of his ground with the score on 23. This brought Taylor Beatty, PG specialist to the crease. Things looked to improve as Tay and Lowey pushed the quick singles and the rotations started ticking over, but to their credit the North Sydney boys were bowling and fielding very well, and the sustained pressure resulted in another mix-up between the wickets that left us 4-52 with more than half the overs gone. Jordan joined Lowey at the crease and together the two kept the scoreboard ticking over with Lowey adding the occasional boundary to start some momentum for the Manly boys. But just as the run rate started to look threatening, Lowey was given LBW for a vital, run-a-ball 45 with the score on 80. From there it was downhill with Jordan (14) gloving one to the keeper and Mat(Toes) holing out to Long off for 2, and at 8-88 with only a few of overs to spare things were looking very bleak indeed. Enter Luke Grant and Nick McLachlan. Together, through smart batting and running between the wickets, the two began to turn the momentum of the game back our way. The countless hours of throw downs at training were beginning to pay off for Nickos as he sent one long at the Fishos’ end while Luke showed some power hitting of his own some to rush us towards a more defendable total. Unfortunately we lost Nickos going for the spectacular finish on the last ball of the innings to leave them with 118 for victory, the partnership having produced a quick-fire 29 that would prove invaluable.
Motivated by both Nick’s humility (“that ought to cement my spot above Dylan”) and his batting, the Manly boys took to the field confident that our bowling and fielding could prevent the opposition from reaching their target of 118. We got off to the perfect start with Dylan taking a wicket first ball, before rounding it off for a maiden to start us off. Unfortunately shortly after we dropped two pivotal catches which may have proved the difference between the two sides. The bowlers kept to their areas well and the fielding was of its usual high standard, but on a flat wicket and with batsmen who were set it was always going to be a challenge. They’re lack of urgency to rotate the strike and find singles meant that whenever we kept it tight for an over, we often took a wicket, but unfortunately we struggled to do this with enough regularity and their No. 3 was able to find a ball every over or two that went for 4 or 6. Things began to get tighter and tighter as we took wickets at increasingly regular intervals, however their No. 3 remained the thorn in our side, scoring with apparent ease to keep them in the game. Just as it looked to be getting away from the Manly boys, with little more than an over left, the No. 3 holed out to Tom Kaye in the deep to swing the game back our way. And so it was in the last over, North Sydney with 8 to win from 6. The balls were right where we wanted them but they managed to scamper through for a single every time, even picking up a two from one delivery, flukily skewed just over cover to leave them needing 2 runs from the final delivery. It was bowled right in the block hole, and toed down to Dylan at Long Off. As calmly as you like he picked it up smoothly and threw it straight to Lowey who whipped off the bails to leave the scores tied. After a brief consultation of the official rules, the umpires confirmed that a Super Over was indeed the protocol for a tied 20/20, and the Manly boys retired to the shed to pick our three batsmen. Lowey, Pughy and Jav were elected, and when Lowey slapped the first ball for 4 over cover, only metres from a 6, it looked like we were heading for a good score. But as it always is in cricket, all it takes is one ball, and we lost Lowey next ball, caught behind to bring Jav to the crease with 4 deliveries left. He and Pughy managed to get 8 off our over, leaving a similar situation to the last over of regular time. Unfortunately that was where the fairy-tale ending ended for the Tahs with our first ball whisked over backward square for 6, leaving them 3 to get from 5 balls, which they did by hitting a 4 two balls later.
There were a number of positives to take out of this game, particularly from our fielding and the fight shown by the team as a unit was impressive to see, we just need to refine our execution and stick to the plans and we will be a force to be reckoned with. Playing in a Super Over was an experience all who played won’t forget, but most of all the lessons learnt from the game will prove valuable as we face Parramatta, away next week, hungrier than before for our first win.