Round 5 Match Reports vs Sydney University

Round 5 saw the UTS North Sydney Bears take on the powerful Sydney University in five one-day fixtures on the Saturday. Unfortunately, Uni were too strong across the grades. The Bears' blushes were somewhat saved on the Sunday with the Poidevin-Gray side registering an important win against a strong Randwick-Petersham side.  

First Grade

Adam Crosthwaite reports

The UTS North Sydney Bears came into the clash against Sydney Uni feeling excited at the Access-rnd-logo-final-940x198-website-bannerinclusion of Justin Avendano and Toby Lester.

We have all been waiting patiently for Justin to return to lead the first grade side and it was a huge boost to the batting line up to have him back to take up his position at number 3.

Toby arrived in the country to re-join the Bears after a massive year for Lancashire and the boys were pumped to have their ace back in the country and the side.

A beautiful day at North Sydney Oval and we were met with a beautiful wicket with a tinge of green. We won the toss and sent Sydney Uni into bat. With the inclusion of Nick Larkin from state duties and former Australian Test player Ed Cowan the Sydney Uni batting list looked strong.

Lester and Campbell opened up and bowled well early to have the students in trouble thanks to Jimmy Campbell’s 2 early wickets to have Sydney Uni at 2/11.

This had Larkin and Cowan batting at a high level which was brilliant to watch for our young batters and an excellent challenge for the bowling group. The bowlers were tight and made both batsmen play good shots to score. The bowling change to bring Ryan Van Kemenade into the attack paid off straight away. Ryan had Cowan caught at long on through beating him with a change of pace and Sam Alexander took a great running catch.

The Sydney Uni captain was next up and Ryan first ball had him trapped in front and all of a sudden we had Uni 4/100. The key to the innings was Larkin, we bowled tight but Larkin was patient and through the middle overs he found the gaps and kept scoring. We kept the rate in check through the middle over due to an amazing spell from Robbie Aitken who took 2/23 off 10 overs straight. This was a game changer as Robbie showed his experience. At one stage we had Sydney Uni 7/164 and we had a real chance of doing some damage.

But it wasn’t to be, Larkin went on to score 138 and was out in the last over as he found gaps and late was very hard to contain. Sydney Uni ended up making 258 which was below par we believed. In general we bowled well and it was our best fielding turn out for the year.

Tom Jagot was elevated to the top of the order to join James Crosthwaite to open up. James was first to go with a mistimed pull shot and when Justin Avendano followed him not long after we were 2/22.

When Adam Crosthwaite was caught out on the hook the Bears were in trouble with 3 senior batsmen out and the score 3/38. Jagot was solid in defence and was batting well as he moved the score on. Ben Bryant missed out as he was bowled by the leg spin Devlin Malone. Ryan Van Kemenade batting at 6 came in and took the attack to Sydney Uni, Ryan and Tom had a partnership as a rear guard action to try and get back some momentum.

With the score moving along to 5/97 Ryan was out caught in the deep. This brought Robbie Aitken to the crease who was unfortunately run out and had the bears in more trouble. Matt Alexander cam and went cheaply. Jagot still hanging in there was joined by James Campbell who together threw caution to the wind as we were in trouble.

Jagot’s innings finally coming to an end for a gutsy 89 and therefore ending our chances for the win. It was a great show by Tom as the only batsmen to put their hand up for the day. This is Tom’s 2nd 50 on the bounce and he is really looking good in the middle.

James Campbell’s innings finished on 40 which saw some great batting down the order. Unfortunately apart from Tom Jagot the rest of the batting line up failed to fire and cost us the game.

The Bears were dismissed for 193 losing by 65 runs. A very unfortunate day with the bat following a good show with the ball and in the field.


Second Grade 

Olly Knight reports


Second grade faced a strong and undefeated Sydney uni side, the toss was won and skipper Glenn Aitken chose to bowl first on a hard grass covered pitch.

A wicket in the first over and consistent wicket throughout saw the Bears hold uni to 6/183 at the 38 over mark. However a strong batting finish and some poor ground fielding saw Uni post 8/272 (20/30 more than they should have). Overall the attack did well with Olly Knight picking up 4 wickets and the other bowlers all chipping in with their own sole wickets.

Special mention to our young English keeper George Lavelle who grabbed two sharp catches and has been outstanding the past few games. His keeping and his attitude since joining the club has been outstanding.

George and Adam Docos got us off to a slow but strong start with the bat and at the first drinks break we were 0/70 off 18. Both couldn’t capitalise on their 30s and were out cheaply. A clump of wickets put us well and truly behind the 8 ball, even with our outrageously deep batting line up we were unable to complete the chase and were bowled out for 250. Captain Glenn Aitken was the only one to pass 50 finish with a strong 71 off 57, his third 50 in as many games.

While the result did not fall our way we will take many positives away from a competitive contest with the bench mark University side and look to next week against Mosman!


Third Grade 

Todd Levine reports

Bowling: Lost the toss and got sent to have a bowl on what was a contestable Bon Andrews strip.

Couple of early wickets brought the spirits high early, a great catch from Levine after some good tandem bowling early on from Ninness and Ammar Shirazi. First 20 odd overs were better than previous weeks in terms of energy and intent in the field.

Unfortunately, we let the game slide from the 20th over onwards, sloppy in the field once again and cost ourselves 40-50 runs through basic errors and a lack of awareness. Ended up needing to chase 285.

The Batting wasn’t pretty and we need a better showing in the future if we are going to compete. We never got going and we were bowled out for 130 in the 49.2nd over pretty much sums it up. We need to get better with our intent to chase the total. We had too many bad dismissals, highlighted the lack of detail and it cost our wickets as we rolled over and let Uni take a bonus point win. Not many positives to report on, we will be back better and stronger to take on Mosman.


Fourth Grade 

Cameron New reports

HP (1)

The 4th grade side turned up to Sydney University looking to continue their recent run of form. St Paul’s, as usual, offered an excellent looking batting deck with plenty of grass coverage. 

The plan was simple. Bowl first and control the game as we have the previous few rounds in the field, then allow a strong batting line up chase down the total. The focus was to win each session but that we would take the points if we controlled the first and last hour of the day.

The boys started well, led by Gurnoor Singh (8-1-3-38) and Fletcher May (10-1-1-30) to pick up 3 early innings wickets. Some range hitting coupled with excellent running and a few fielding errors saw the Uni boys establish a strong 4th wicket partnership of just under 100 runs.

The return of Lachlan Stewart proved to be the game changer. In his first game back from injury, Lachlan returned figures of 10-0-3-38 with his off spinners, removing both the set batsman before claiming his third shortly after. Lachlan was well supported by Ben Knox and Lachlan Cork during the second half of the innings, before Fletcher returned to bowl out his overs. The students toiled hard to put on 40 for the 7th wicket, and a few more fielding errors saw them finish with 7-206 from their allotted overs.

With half the job done, the bears felt confident we could chase down what looked to be a below par score.

Things didn’t start well with a wicket in the first over. Adam Cavenor (52) and Chirs Lloyd (16) began building our innings and took us through to the first drinks break one down with the score at 53. Unfortunately, Chris was judged lbw shortly after drinks, bringing Lachie Stewart to the crease. Adam and Lachie continued to build, bringing the total to just under 100, and with Adam passing 50 for the 2nd round in succession. UTS North Sydney Bears in the driver’s seat.

Unfortunately, this is where this went sideways. The introduction of spin once again proved the game changer. The students bowled tight from both ends and were attacking in the field, frustrating our batsman and claiming 3 wickets in quick succession. The new batsman struggled to get in against some difficult to pick spin and we continued to lose wickets in clumps, eventually being bundled out for 141 in the 45th over.

A disappointing result for the strong 4th grade side, highlighting the importance of establishing partnerships and backing up quality bowling performances with solid fielding.

Congratulations to Gurnoor, Lachie Stewart and Adam on their contributions with the bat and ball.

We will look to return to the winner’s column next round when we travel to Rawson Oval to combat the Whales.


Fifth grade 

Izaak Merlehan reports

On a trademark Tunks International Park pitch, a lost toss saw North Sydney having a trundle first up.

Sol Balbi produced a lethal opening spell and along with some aggressive bowling from Harrison May, the game was evenly poised at 3-70-odd at the drinks break. The middle session was won by the Students as they put on around 100 for no loss. The third session was owned by the Bears as we were able to bowl out USYD and drag that total back down to 252. Fudge Atshan took 4 and Balbia had 3 wickets after the innings.

The run chase started steady, but two quick wickets saw us in trouble, but an impressive partnership between Charlie Rose (30) and Michael Lloyd has the boys confident of chasing successfully, but frequent wickets throughout the middle overs halted the flow of runs. Needing about 100 runs from the last 10 overs, and even with Vice-President Michael Lloyd at the crease, North Sydney inevitably fell 39 short of the total. 

Lloyd, being the professional he is, brought up his century in the last over and finished up on 103 not out. He also put in his own entry into the biggest BBQ of the season as a call of "Waiting, No." was overruled by a "Yeah, come on." whilst the ball trickled back to the bowler and Izaak Merlehan was run-out by close to three metres. Both batsmen have reportedly made-up and moved past the incident.


Poidevin Gray 

Fletcher May reports

Adam Docos Finally won the toss and choose to bat first on a flat deck. Adam  and George were the opening pair. George was unlucky as he was out first ball for a duck caught behind, which had us 1-0. The wicket brought Jake hardy to the crease, The two put on a wonderful partnership of 128 before Adam Docos got out sweeping the ball straight to backward square on 45. Jake hardy soon followed for 74 getting cleaned bowled, at this point the bears were now 3-130. Both Bennett Walsh and Adam Wigglesworth batted cleverly to get us back in a good spot before Bennett was out for 25, the score at this stage was 4-173 with about 10 overs to go. Adam followed soon after for 20, 5-214. James Leary and Ammar Shirazi both chipped in, with 15 and 24 respectively. Fletcher May ended 7* and Gurnoor Singh 1*. The final score standing at 7-223 after 50.

In reply, Randwick got after a good start and were 0-59 before Nuwan took the first wicket. Soon after another wicket fell to Ben Knox with George taking a great catch from behind the stumps, 2-88. Randwick had a good partnership between Sangha and Tector before Nuwan hit back again getting the big wicket of Sangha. The score was 3-158. Just after drinks three quick wickets fell, two going to Ammar and Knox picking up his second wicket, putting Randwick on the back foot at 6-186. With Randwick on the back foot and the pressure rising, we took another one in a game changing over, with a magic stumping down the leg side by George getting other big wicket Tector for 53, 7-208. Two balls later another wicket fell, bowled by Fletcher making the score, 8-209, then last ball of the over another wicket fell chipping it straight to Ben Knox at short mid-wicket, 9-209. Ammar finished them off, taking 3 wickets as well. Randwick Petersham all out for 210 in 47.3 overs.