Week 13 Wrap vs Fairfield, Universities, Penrith, Gordon

1st Grade Round 8: UTS North Sydney vs Fairfield Liverpool at North Sydney Oval

UTS North Sydney 9/224cc (T Reynolds 64, J Rew 61) def by Fairfield Liverpool 1/253cc

An unchanged First Grade side took the long drive to Rosedale, and unfortunately came off second best to a hungry team of Lions.

Mac Jenkins lost the toss and Fairfield-Liverpool batted first, with established opening pair Jaydyn Simmons and Yuvraj Sharma. Unfortunately for the Bears, we saw rather a lot of that pair as they batted until the 45th over, putting on 212 before Simmons was stumped by James Rew off the bowling of Mac Jenkins for 95. To give the Bears’ bowlers credit, despite not being able to find the wicket, they all bowled with good control and neither batter really got away.

The second-wicket pair added another 41 in 5 overs and the Lions closed on 1/253 off 50. The highlight in the field was a brilliant one-handed stop from Tim Reynolds on the boundary which turned a six into a single.

Rosedale is a big ground so 253 wasn’t below par, but certainly chaseable. The Bears lost Brent Atherton early, but Rew and Jenkins combined to put on 50 for the second wicket at a good rate before Jenkins was trapped LBW in the 11th over. A rare failure for Jimmy Greenslade made it 3/70 in the 15th and brought in Tim Reynolds to join Rew on 40*. They took the Bears to 122 at the halfway point so the game was evenly poised, but Rew was out hit wicket the following over, leaving us 4/124.

From here, the Bears stumbled, with Tim Reynolds standing tall but unable to form another partnership above 30. Rob Aitken, Adam Cavenor and Olly Knight made 4, 13 and 11 respectively, and at 7/181 in the 39th we had become second favourites. As long as Reynolds remained, there was hope, but he was eighth out for 64 in the 43rd with 58 still to get. The tail, led by Fletcher May (17*) batted out the 50 overs but we ended up 29 short.

Another case of “what might have been” sees the Bears drop to seventh on the ladder, and determined to make amends against third-placed Northern District after Christmas

2nd Grade Round 8: UTS North Sydney v Fairfield Liverpool at Bon Andrews Oval

UTS North Sydney 2/205 (32.3 overs) (D Mares 85, S Gumbs 55, B Kumar 38) def Fairfield Liverpool 6/202 cc (J Rodgie 3/39, H Lee-Young 2/26)

Back at a pristine Bon Andrews, 2nd grade faced the lions in an important game that would solidify a top 4 place heading into the Christmas break.

The deck was green but firm and the bears won the toss, deciding to make use of any movement in the wicket and bowl. Rodgie and May started well bowling good overs that challenged the batters before rain intervened and the covers came on. This would become a trend over the next 20 overs with a handful of rain breaks disrupting play and limiting the game to 48 overs a side.

Credit to the Fairfield players who helped us out with covers all day and ensured the wicket stayed dry and playable. Despite the constant interruptions the Bears bowlers remained disciplined and bowled smart overs, protecting the short boundary and picking up key wickets at regular intervals. Rodgie impressed with his control and ability to bowl change ups in the death overs, finishing with 3/39 off 9 overs. Hedges continued his form with the ball taking 1/22 of his 10 demonstrating a maturity and game awareness beyond his years. Lee-Young bowled a crucial spell through the middle overs, hitting the bat hard and taking 2 important wickets just as Fairfield began to build a partnership. Yet another outstanding bowling performance restricted Fairfield to 6/203 from their 48 overs, a well below par score on a good Bon pitch and a very short boundary.

The message from the skipper was clear, be positive and make the most of the powerplay. Kumar and Mares we able to do just that, boosting the bears to 0/70 after 16 overs and setting a fantastic foundation for the chase. When Kumar departed (38) Gumbs joined Mares and the rhythm of the innings continued with boundaries flowing freely and both players enjoying a good wicket and quick outfield.

After 30 overs the Bears were 1/168 and with the total quickly getting closer Mares was out caught for a wonderful 85 trying to finish the game quickly and find that 3rd hundred of the season. Gumbs finished 55* partnered by Lee-Young 15* when the bears passed the required total in the 32nd over. A comprehensive victory to finish a strong year for a well placed 2nd grade who will be looking to continue their form for a finals run

3rd Grade Round 8: UTS North Sydney v Fairfield Liverpool at Fairfield Oval

UTS North Sydney 4/108 (19.3 overs) (H Reynolds 30*, O Jago-Lewis 27*) def Fairfield Liverpool 107 (40.4 overs) (I Merlehan 4/17, C Savage 3/19)

The Fairfield Lions at Fairfield Park were next on the agenda for the 3rd grade Bears.

After our big win vs Sutherland it was no surprise that we lost Baran Kumar to 2nds. Justin Rodgie also joined Baran in 2s and with Nuwan Whyte unavailable it was John Nevell, Izaak Merlehan and Jack Thomas who were drafted into 3s.

The Bears lost the toss and we’re asked to bowl and it was Chris Savage who made the early inroads, removing the two openers and #3. Chris bowled with pace and accuracy and was too good for the Lions top order.

In the middle overs the combination of the Thomas brothers and Izaak Merlehan strangled the lions middle order. Merlo took the spoils with figures of 4 for 17 off 7.3 as Fairfield were bundled out for 107 in the 41st over.

With a bonus point on offer, the Bears looked to start positively. We lost Clark early but Nixon-Tomko and New had things ticking along nicely at 1-40 before a collapse saw us lose 3-10 and things looked a little shaky.

But young guns Hamish Reynolds (30*) and Oscar Jago-Lewis (27*) took on the Lions spinners and quickly wrapped up the chase in 19.3 overs securing the Bonus Point. Both batsman batted with confidence and the Lions had no answers.

An important win which has the Bears 7th, heading into Christmas, one with out of the 6. 3s will likely need to win at least 4 of the last 7 games for a shot at the finals.

Women's 3rd Grade Round 11: UTS North Sydney v Universities at Tempe Reserve

UTS North Sydney 8/108 (E Aitken 30*) def Universities 3/101

Six wins in a row!

We lost the toss and were asked to bat on a cold, rainy and windy day. Our openers Emily Aitken (30*) and Sarah Gibbons (10) set up a fantastic platform for us with an opening stand of 50. Evy McKay (19 off 13) and Amy Gibbons (20 off 16) then combined to really accelerate our innings and give us hopes of a score of around 140-150. But high wind and loopy bowling undid a few of our middle-order batters, and we eventually reached 108 after 20 overs - competitive, but not comfortable.

Universities opened strongly and raced to 2/55 off 10 overs, helped by some ordinary fielding on our part in difficult conditions. A good run-out from Kayla Robson, a great keeper's catch from Amy Gibbons and some tight bowling in the middle, especially from Jillian Edwards (2-1/5), plus some excellent fielding towards the end, saw us defend 12 off the last over for another good win, holding Universities to 3/101 in their 20 overs.

Our women's 3rd grade side is now 2nd on the ladder at the mid-season break with 6 wins in a row - what a fantastic performance! Bring on 2023!

4th Grade Round 8: UTS North Sydney v Fairfield Liverpool at Tunks International Sports Park

UTS North Sydney 211 (49.2 overs) (A Amir 45, K Karan 33, N Desai 31, V Kumar 29) def Fairfield Liverpool 155 (46 overs) (H Charles 2/11, J Graham 2/23, N Desai 2/34, R Alexander 2/35)

Another week, another glorious vista at Tunks International Sports Park. Or so the 4th grade bears thought, as they rolled into the venue to assist the illustrious Bernie with the covers. This was not the final time the team would be manoeuvring the sheets, with rain on and off all morning causing disruption to play.

The weather and the green tinge on the pitch unfortunately meant the Bears were sent in when Perry lost the toss. This didn’t phase the openers Nigul and Desai, the two youngsters taking on the Fairfield attack, punish numerous over pitched and short pitched delivers, not quite to the fence as the outfield was still soggy from the drizzle. The pair set out of the gates strong at five an over to take the score past 50 before Nigul was out cutting to point. Desai went in a similar fashion, and when Ray Alexander was dismissed shortly after adjudged leg before, the Bears were in a spot of bother at 3/60.

In stepped Ahmer Amir and the hero from last week Kaustav Karan, who set about rebuilding the innings after the blistering start. The pair combining for a run shy of 70 before Karan was disappointingly dismissed prior to the final drinks break.

With 127 on the board and wickets in hand, the Bears looked set for a total of well over 200, but Broom and Perry came and went contributing little, again followed by Amir for 45. This left the innings evenly poised at 7/149 entering the final 10 overs.

Up stepped the tail, who were determined to wag and give the Bears an imposing total. Jacob Graham and Vrushab Kumar put on a solid 20 before Graham was dismissed, laying the platform for the best number 11 in the comp to shine.

Brad Wilson strode to the crease and thumped his first ball through the covers for 4 and second ball straight down the ground for 3. Kumar and Wilson took the game on and ultimately the score past 200 with some swashbuckling play. The pair put on 39 before Kumar was dismissed for 29 in the last over, Wilson 18 not out.

Anything over 200 feels like 300 at Tunks, and the Bears had 211 on the board. The Lions prepared themselves for a mammoth chase, but couldn’t prepare for what they were going to face in the first 12 overs. A barrage from Henry Charles and Brad Wilson, the pair holding the visitors to 2/12 off the first 12 overs, leaving the Lions exactly 5 an over off 40 for victory. The pair were unlucky not to have more than two wickets with close shouts and half chances, Charles bowling 35 straight balls for no runs after his first ball went for 2.

From there, Fairfield were too far behind the game, and the pressure continued to build, with Jacob Graham and Ray Alexander showing their experience with the ball, bombarding the opposition with line and length, with a hint of seam and swing. The pair took 2 wickets each to progress the match.

Ultimately Desai and Charles cleaned up the tail, along with a run out from Robin Broom. The task too tall for the visiting Lions, out performed by a tidy display of one day cricket.

The Bears finish the first half of the season second on the ladder, nine points adrift of first place Manly, setting up a tantalising run home to finals in the new year.

5th Grade Round 8: UTS North Sydney v Fairfield Liverpool at Don Dawson Oval

UTS North Sydney 3/214 cc (M Lloyd 90*, C Lloyd 71) def Fairfield Liverpool 167 (43.3 overs) (D Singh 3/19, M Cole 3/25, S Vohra 2/33)

5th Grade arrived at a cloudy Don Dawson Oval looking to maintain their lead atop the standings. Little did they know it would be a game of two halves, and a day of two narratives…

Innings 1: A tale of two bombsmen

Returning skipper Michael Lloyd took over the captaincy duties from his more than willing cousin and promptly lost the toss on a soft, green wicket under cloudy skies. Openers Olly Jennings and Dilraj Singh continued their good form, seeing off the new ball until Jennings (5) fell in the 10th over with the score on 17. Michael Lloyd strode out to join Singh and together they pushed the score along before Singh (22) fell trying to up the run rate.

Thus begins our tale of 2 bombsmen. Chris Lloyd joined Michael and together they showed Fairfield the meaning of pain. Despite the difficult conditions, both Lloyds hit the ball cleanly all around the park. A few pull shots early from Chris were matched by some trademark slaps from Michael, including a towering straight six into the trees at the far end. The boundaries were flowing and the heads dropped from Fairfield, the toss looking like a classic “good one to lose”. Chris then upped the ante with a straight six of his own before finally succumbing to a good outfield catch for 71 off just 65 rocks, the partnership worth 127 at 5 an over. Matt Cole joined his skipper and played a few curious defensive shots, finishing with 11* while Michael Lloyd continued on to complete a glorious unbeaten 90* from 116. The tale of two bombsmen was complete but with a split decision – Michael having hit more sixes but Chris enjoying a better strike rate. Overall the total of 3/214 appeared well above par on a still difficult wicket.

Innings 2: From the sublime, to the ridiculous

The Bears took to the field after the break and began well, with the Cole non-brothers opening up the bowling in excellent fashion. Matt’s 1st over included 2 wides but the 8th delivery struck paydirt, beating the openers defence to leave Fairfield 1/2. Tom produced a metronomic performance, bowling his 5 overs for 5 runs including 3 maidens. He got just reward in his last, having the number 3 caught at slip.

Enter the opposition skipper. He had taken a beating from the Lloyd cousins earlier in the day and immediately set about making amends. His sublime innings was reminiscent of what was seen earlier in the day, hitting the bowlers to all parts. However, his excellent 80 off just 64 balls went from the sublime to the ridiculous. The Bears skipper had been rotating through his bowlers looking for the right combination to make the breakthrough. Shiv Vohra had done some good work tying the batsmen down at one end and slowing the run rate, but the other end continued to leak runs. Michael threw the ball to his cousin Chris, who promptly bowled what could politely be called “absolute garbage”. In his second over, his worst delivery (probably ever) was so short and slow that it was easily on its way back down to Fairfield’s skipper at the other end. However, he made a fatal mistake. Instead of hitting this ball into the adjacent postcode, the ball took the leading edge and went straight up. Young Eshaan Holla looked somewhat unsure underneath it but managed to hold on to the crucial chance. The over further descended into chaos, with a waist high no ball followed later by a leg side wide that was somehow almost caught at 1st slip. Michael made a wise choice in ending this farce after 2 overs, but the damage had been done.

From there, the Bears asserted full control over the game. Shiv Vohra completed his 10 straight overs, finishing with 2/33, while Dilraj Singh took over from Chris Lloyd’s end and bowled the exact opposite of what had come before. He bowled consistently and accurately, eventually taking 3/19 off his 8 overs and saw the life strangled out of the game. Matt Cole returned once Vohra was done and took 2 late wickets to finish with 3/25 as Fairfield were bowled out for 167, giving the Bears a 47-run win. 6 points and a song, and a 7-point ladder lead was just what the boys wanted in their Santa sack for Christmas. Up next is 2nd placed Northern District and an opportunity for the Bears to put serious distance between themselves and the field.

Poidevin-Gray Shield Conference Semi-Final: UTS North Sydney v Gordon at Bon Andrews Oval

UTS North Sydney 2/105 (15 overs) (J Rew 75) def Gordon 104 (27 overs) (H Charles 4/36, E Oxenham 2/9)

The PGs side arrived at a rainy Bon Andrew’s for the Sixers Conference Semi Final as the only undefeated side in the conference and out to prove a point.

After a lengthy rain delay, halting the days proceedings until after midday, skipper Jenkins eventually lost the toss and the bears were sent into the field, in what would be a reduced 37 over a side affair.

Little did Gordon know, but that meant they had to face debutant Henry Charles on a green seamer. The debutants presence was felt early doors by snicking off the opener in his first over. Not to be outdone, Jamieson Hedges grabbed the other opener in the next over. Charles was then the main man, by grabbing the key wicket of the Gordon batsmen caught behind yet again. Henry suddenly became Scott Bolandesque, grabbing another 2 poles leaving Gordon devasted at 5-40. Jenkins came in and got one in his first leaving Gordon 6-45. From here Kai, Harri and Everett (2) cleaned up the tail. But it was the Henry Charles show that turned the game on its head, to leave Gordon bowled out for 104.

A tricky chase was expected, however overseas recruit James Rew thought otherwise. Absolutely punishing the bowling attack and using the short boundary to good use (not that any boundary would’ve been big enough for the shots that were played).

Rew was dismissed for 75 of 53 balls which ensured that the bears cruised home, winning by 8 wickets in the 15th over. This leaves the team undefeated after 7 games and moving them into the Conference Final against Randwick Petersham on the first weekend of February at the hallowed turf of North Sydney Oval.

Brewer Shield Round 11: UTS North Sydney v Penrith at Howell Oval

UTS North Sydney 1/103 (14.3 overs) (S Julien 47*, E Buckley 38) def Penrith 4/100 cc (S Julien 3/13)

A fast & dry track at Howell Oval, Penrith greeted our Brewer girls for their Round 11 clash with Penrith CC. Winning the toss, Penrith chose to bat & were immediately restricted in the early overs by the Bears fine bowling & enthusiastic fielding. An early run out to Shiloh Julien & keeper Kayla Robson put the Cats on the back foot before extended periods of tight bowling saw Penrith struggling to compile a competitive T20 total. Shiloh Julien was again the pick of the bowlers picking up 3/13 off 4, however, full credit to all the Bears bowlers who only went for 76 runs off the bat in the remaining 16 overs with 11 sundries.

In response the Bears launched into the run chase with great energy & skill. Opening the batting - Liz Buckley smashed an impressive 38 off 37 deliveries (7 boundaries) & her opening partner Shiloh Julien finished 47no off 46 deliveries (7 boundaries). This excellent opening partnership laid the foundations for a very quick run chase. Sam Kuncham came in at the fall of the first wicket & compiled a quickfire 10 off 7 (2 boundaries) to see the Bears over the line with 5.3 overs to spare for a bonus point victory.

The Brewer Bears head into the Christmas Break in a strong position in 5th place in the competition. A key point is that 7 of our matches so far this season have been against teams currently sitting in the top 4. As such, the New Year shows much promise as it sees the Bears with the vast majority of their matches against teams currently sitting outside the top 4. Bring on the New Year!

AW Green Shield Round 1: UTS North Sydney v Gordon at Beauchamp Oval

UTS North Sydney 5/268 cc (T Hogan 87, N Champion 51, J Mannix 49, N Batish 29, A Grover 27*) def Gordon 6/265 cc (L Barber 3/38)

The Bears Green Shield team won their first round match on Tuesday (20/12), holding on despite a strong run chase in the final overs from Gordon.

In an alarmingly tight finish (with sideline supporters trying to locate defibrillators!) it came down to the final over, with the opposition needing 12 runs to chase down the Bears’ 5/268.

But great clutch bowling from quick Tom Cole left Gordon needing a 6 off the final ball, from which they could only manage a double.

Smart field placement and good line and length held runs down despite batters attacking most balls. Spinner Lachlan Barber took bowling honours with 3/38 off 7, with wickets also to quicks Henry Riseborough (1/60 of 9), and Josh Strefner (1/31 off 6).

Canberra-based bat Tom Hogan also claimed a scalp (1/37 off 10) after top scoring with a rapid-fire 87 from 89 balls. He followed openers Nick Champion (51 from 81) and Naman Batish (29/45), who set a cracking pace from the start. Keeper Jack Mannix fell just short of a half century (49 from 65) before Gus Grover (27 from 15) and Henry Riseborough (13 from 7) took apart the final overs.

A great start to the season, by a team that has already bonded well in pre-season training and trial games, coached by Mac Jenkins and Tim Reynolds

Media courtesy of Tony Johnson, Malcolm Trees, Jeff Williamson, Greg Buckley Adam Cavenor and UTS North Sydney members.