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Present team wins back Fiona Lyon Cup as Ladies Lunch proves to be a McGrath Foundation hit

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Sunday 25th January saw the annual Past vs Present match take place. Both teams were vying for the Fiona Lyon Cup, in its 2nd year of being given to the winning Captain.

The Present team was a strong one, filled with 1st grade cricketers like James Munting and Luke Diserens, as well as young up and comers such as Josh Wigney and Jordan Daly. Old heads Rowan Hamman and Josh Petersen kept them all together. The team was skippered by Adam Gummer.

The past team included 2 former 1st class players, and all had played first grade except current President Andrew Fraser and fast bowling phenomenon Simon Lyon.

Both teams were primed for a big game. Warm-ups were not only done with the intensity of a proper game by the Present side, they also came with stern motivational speeches. “Get out Marks and Bradstreet, and we have done our job” was the mantra of the present team. Not because they thought they were the dangers, more because the present team wanted their heads.

The Past teams warm-up was more due to necessity than anything else. No warm-up could have meant a trip to the hospital after the game, and therefore no beer, which would have been a travesty.

Adam Gummer won the toss for the Present team and chose to bat first. However, with a warn pitch (it was the same one from the previous day’s first grade match) it was tough going. Recent 1st grade debutant Jarrod Rawlings carried the side with a solid 40, but no one else got going. Wickets to Lyon, Ford and Youell throughout the innings kept the run rate in check, and despite some late order hitting from Josh Wigney (something that has never been said before), the Present side was bowled out for 105.

Opening up with Cranney and Dodd (who had flown all the way from Queensland just for the game), the Past team were in trouble early. The prized wicket of Marks from Luke Diserens continued the slide. However fellow Club Coach Shawn Bradstreet strode to the crease with an air of confidence. He proceeded to push the Past team closer and closer to the 106 run target. He hit many balls onto Sydney Rd, taking everyone back to a time in the 2000’s where Shawn dominated Manly Oval with both bat and ball.

However, after Bradstreet skyed one and was dismissed for a well-made 45 (although it was 57 if you count Shawn’s runs that Dollars gave to other batsmen), the equation was simple. One ball left, 4 to tie and 5 to win. As the Past team were the current holders of the Fiona Lyon Cup, a tie would be good enough to retain the cup. Club President Andrew Fraser was on strike, looking to perform one of his usual plane-watching shots to get the Past team home. With James Munting steaming in, Frase managed an audacious french cut, another shot he was well known for. It was heading to the boundary until Present wicket-keeper Rowan Hamman, who had a brilliant day, dived full stretch to his left to stop the ball going to the boundary.

What a finish. The Present team are the new holders of the Fiona Lyon Cup.

But enough about the on field action. Upstairs, while the boys were going about their work on the field, Katie Tucker, wife of ex-first grade fast bowler Geoff, had organised a ladies luncheon to help raise money for the McGrath Foundation. And what an event it was. Over 50 ladies turned up to an event that included guest speaker Rhiannon Rees, plenty of bubbles and some amazing food and some live entertainment from Luke Tyler.

The Room at the Top looked an absolute treat. We can’t actually remember a ladies event ever occurring at the Room at the Top, but Katie pulled it off with a mix of hard work and class. Well done Katie.

At the end of the game, all of the players shared beers, old stories, new stories and generally each other’s company. A day like this is a reminder of why we all love and play this great game….. for the people around it. It was a fitting day for Fiona Lyon and one that helped raise some great money for the McGrath Foundation. How much was raised is not confirmed yet but we will be sure to let everyone know when it is confirmed.

At the end of the day, it was also in memory of Fiona Lyon, our great club servant, who will always hold a special place for many of us at Manly Oval.

A big thankyou to Adam Gummer and especially David Gainsford for their fantastic organisation of the day.

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David Gainsford presenting Present skipper Adam Gummer with the Fiona Lyon Cup – Photo: Ian Bird

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Simon Couch and Shawn Bradstreet both sending balls to the boundary

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Gina Gainsford enjoys some bubbles at the Ladies Lunch – Photo: Ian Bird

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Past spinner Mark Taylor went head to head with Present spinner Luke Diserens

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Current Chairman of Selectors Chris Hynes desperately tries to stop the ball in the field – Photo: Ian Bird

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Simon Couch goes up while Nathan Dodd shows he has added a few shots to his game – Photo: Ian Bird

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Josh Petersen and Jarrod Rawlings laugh at the bowling of some of the old fellas – Photo: Ian Bird

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The 2 stars for the Past team were undoubtedly Simon Lyon and Shawn Bradstreet

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Chris Hynes shows off the McGrath Foundation hats

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Cast and crew at the Fiona Lyon Cup – Photo: Ian Bird

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