Week 2 Wrap vs Parramatta

1st Grade UTS North Sydney vs Parramatta at Bon Andrews Oval

UTS North Sydney 8/427 (T Jagot 149*, A Bariol 101, J Avendano 48, B Atherton 37, T Reynolds 37, J James 34) vs Parramatta

The hum of traffic, movement of dogs and a sprinkling of park goers and cricket lovers alike sitting on benches and under Moreton Bay and Port Jackson Fig trees set the scene. It was the first home game of the season, and only the eleventh ever First Grade fixture on North Sydney no.2, at the earlier start time of 9:30am.

After losing the toss and being sent in by the opposition, new opening pair Jack James (34) and Brent Atherton (37) got the Bears off to a strong start, scoring at a tick under four an over and taking the Bears to 59 without loss at the drinks break. James was in good touch dispatching 7 fours, but was dismissed with the score on 67 after taking on a short ball and being caught on the fence. During his innings, Jack reached 1,000 runs for the club in all competitions – an impressive feat so early in just his second season and in only his 28th innings.

Atherton, who hit 5 fours, was out caught behind a few overs later with the score at 72, bringing together Justin Avendano and Tom Jagot. The experienced pair gradually took control of the Two Blues bowling attack, punishing anything short and taking advantage of the spread field. As a sign of things to come, Jagot cracked a four off the second ball he faced. The team hundred came up in the first over after lunch as the Bears continued to build towards a big score. Jagot reached fifty off 62 balls in 71 minutes. The hundred run partnership from 138 balls between captain and vice captain came up in the 45th over.

Avendano looked set after smashing 8 fours but, as in Round 1, was dismissed on 48 as he attempted to whack the spinner for six, only to be caught on the fence in the 49th over with the Bears 3/191. This brought Tim Reynolds to the crease and, with it, an immediate increase in the run rate. Reynolds and Jagot added 54 runs to the total, solidifying the Bears position of 3/245 at Tea. Reynolds, as is often the case looked set for a big score after taking 30 off his first 20 balls and hitting 5 fours and 2 sixes. Unfortunately, he was run out on 37 at the keeper’s end taking a quick single, which left Jagot on 87.

New recruit, Aiden Bariol, was next in, and he watched from the other end as Jagot edged towards his 7th First Grade hundred. Jagot moved into triple figures from 141 balls in 174 minutes, celebrating by running towards the packed Cunningham Pavilion and the cheers of his team mates and supporters. Ironically, he ran out of shot of the streamed footage, so you had to be there to see it. Bariol, who was a bit scratchy early and who survived a dropped caught and stumping chance from the same ball warmed to the task and moved past fifty. Bariol brought up the milestone with a huge straight six, repeating the shot three times in the one over to go from 46 to 64 and in the process registering a hundred run partnership with his partner from 118 balls. Bariol continued to push the score along, reaching his maiden First Grade century from 102 balls – an impressive acceleration after his first 30 runs had taken 55 deliveries.

With the team score at 5/405 and four overs left in the day, the batsmen had a licence to pile on the runs. However, bizarrely, we lost three wickets in four balls in the 94th over! Olly Knight was caught behind the ball after hitting a big six, before Mac Jenkins and Matt Alexander were both bowled without scoring. At the close of play, Jagot remained not out 149 with James Aitken at the other end on 2*. The Bears will have the option of declaring or chasing a few more quick runs when play resumes next week with the score at 8/427.

This was the first day the club used its new Frogbox live streaming service. You can watch back Day 1 and see Day 2 live at this link.

2nd Grade UTS North Sydney vs Parramatta at Old Kings Oval

UTS North Sydney 6/368 (M Papworth 126, R Aitken 93*, R Alexander 66, G Aitken 43) vs Parramatta

Through the eyes of Cameron New.

What is there left to say, that hasn’t already been said? They say leadership is the ability to influence others. What could be more poignant when considering 2nd Grade father-figure and GQs Bear of the decade - Glenn Aitken? Turning up early with coffee in hand. Taking over the role of playmaker in the warm up game of touch. Completing his 400th slip catch of the season or murdering off drives during throw downs. The man oozes authority and elegant masculinity.

It came as no surprise then when the coin fell with the face of Donald Bradman pointing skyward, that the words “we’ll have a bat all day thanks” were heard around the ground.

A final stirring speech before the openers headed out, set the mood for the day - and what a day it was. 6/368, with a classy maiden Bears hundred, two half centuries and a captain’s knock the highlights.

The morning belonged to Max Papworth. Newly installed as the vanguard of our batting order this season, his run-a-ball 60 last round was the perfect warm up for this round’s heroics. He and Jordan Vilensky toiled hard against the moving new ball.

Two quick wickets brought Raymond Alexander to the crease. The partnership with Papworth was 175 and the boys put on a clinic in matching patience with force to wear down the Parramatta attack and punish some poor bowling through the middle session.

An unfortunate run out with Max on 99 brought an end to Ray’s vigil on 66 - another quality middle order performance from a Bear who has been delivering runs for fun over the past 12 months.

However, the moment was only briefly delayed as a quick single brought Max through to his maiden Bears hundred. His knock of 126 (off 191 balls) was the perfect foundation for our innings and even more impressive considering he had twinged a hip earlier in the day.

The final 90 minutes of the day belonged to the Aitkens - Glenn and Rob - former Parramatta players firmly entrenched in Bears statesman ranks. The pair put on 98 for the 5th wicket. Excellent running between the wickets and brutalising power down the ground were features of both innings.

The skipper was undone on 43, but Rob only lifted further, slapping the Parra bowlers around the ground to the tune of 93* (132). True to form, Robbie was selfless at the end of the day working singles in the last over and allowing Niranjan Naguleswaran (16*) to work his magic, scoring 360 degrees around the ground as standard.

The boys walked off with 368 runs on the board and buoyed by the run fest at both Old Kings and Bon Andrews this weekend. We are keen to return and finish the job with the ball next weekend!

Congrats also to Tom Jagot and Aiden Bariol on their excellent performances at home!

Beware the Bears 

Media courtesy of Tony Johnson, David James, Jeff Vilensky, Sarah Berman, Shiv Vohra and Parramatta District Cricket Club.