Week 20 Wrap vs Campbelltown-Camden and Gordon

1st Grade Round 13: UTS North Sydney vs Campbelltown Camden at North Sydney Oval

UTS North Sydney 213 (70.5 Overs) (T Reynolds 45*, T Jagot 41, D Mares 35, M Jenkins 29) def by Campbelltown Camden 276 (87 Overs) (F May 3/34, O Knight 3/68, S Alexander 2/65)

The First Grade Bears came off second best to a motivated Ghosts side over a tough weekend. As has become customary, we won the toss, bowled first and started well, but were unable to convert a strong position.

In a huge blow to the Bears, James Campbell, who inspired the last two strong starts with the ball, left the field in his third over with chest pains and took no further part in the match. However, it didn’t immediately deter us, with Olly Knight taking the first wicket in the next over, and Fletcher May replacing Campbell and bowling tidily. The second wicket came courtesy of a Tim Reynolds run out when one of the batters wanted a second run (never a good idea on Reynolds’ arm) and his partner was less keen. Campbelltown were 2/15 and the Bears on top.

It took until the 23rd over for the next breakthrough to come, with six bowlers having been used in this time, with Sam Alexander bowling the second opener to break a partnership of 60. The return of Knight to the attack after lunch saw the end of the Ghosts’ skipper for 45, thanks to slip catch by Dylan Mares, but another 60+ partnership followed. Jenkins (1/77) and Alexander (2/65) bowled in tandem for much of the session, and eventually got their reward with a wicket each, both bowled.

After a late flurry of runs by Andrew Salian, who’d batted through since before lunch, the Ghosts went to tea at 6/210. The tail wagged, a catch or two went down, and some big lbw shouts went the way of the visitors, and Campbelltown reached 276 before being bowled out. Salian was cleaned up by Fletcher May, in his excellent second spell, for 96, and May added two more wickets in that session to finish the pick of the bunch with 3/34. Knight picked up the other pole to finish 3/68.

The Bears had a tricky 7 overs to face before stumps, but negotiated them safely, and Mares and Atherton took the score to 36 the next morning before Atherton offered a catch to cover point and was on his way for 15. Mares looked good for his 35 before a mix-up with his batting partner, Tom Jagot, saw him dismissed, bringing returning skipper Mac Jenkins to the crease. Jenkins and Jagot added 48, sadly our highest partnership of the innings, with Jagot punishing anything on his legs and Jenkins hitting over the infield on the off-side, tempting them with balls just out of reach. Jagot was dropped off his fourth ball, but later appeared nailed on for 50 until a ball stopped on him and a leading edge went straight to mid-off. 3/116 and the game was in the balance.

Unfortunately, we lost Jimmy Greenslade before lunch as a well-struck pull ended up in the hands of deep square leg, and Jenkins was bowled straight after the break. Suddenly at 5/135, the target of 277 was a long way away. Tim Reynolds applied himself admirably, giving nothing away on a pitch that had become slow and low, and setting about chipping away at the target. All of the remaining batters kept him company for a few overs, but Olly Knight and the May brothers each made 11 and Sam Alexander 3, so it wasn’t enough. The last rites came just after tea when Harrison May was caught in the gully. With Campbell unable to bat, 9 down meant all out 213, and the Ghosts winners by 63 runs. A frustrating defeat because so many batters got starts and just one big partnership could have been enough.

Onwards and upwards – two rounds left to make amends and end on a high.

2nd Grade Round 13: UTS North Sydney v Campbelltown Camden at Raby 1 Oval

UTS North Sydney 142 (46.3 Overs) (R Aitken 60, G Aitken 51) def by Campbelltown Camden 1/143 (31.3 Overs)

It was an expected stinker all the way out at Raby oval for the 2nd XI with play brought forward an hour reducing the hibernating Bears’ sleep time. With the day expected to reach a whopping 38 degrees captain Stewy uncharacteristically lost the toss and we were sent into bat.

Not the most ideal starts by the Bears, losing our first wicket in just the 4th ball of the game with the new trial of opener JAMO Hedges. It was looking bleak from there as wickets fell quickly at one stage being 5/8 off 10 overs. Nonetheless then you guessed who G.A, G spot, the G-man, Glenn Aiken (51) continuing his phenomenal form with brother Rob (60) showing their experience and class leading the bears through the tough conditions putting on a crucial partnership and giving the playing group some much needed hope ending up on a hard fought 142.

Toughing the conditions, our bowlers came out firing with Justin Rodgie and James Aiken posing many chances in the opening spell that we were unable to grab. Merlo was injected into the game after a long batting innings and took the ball in hand, Izaak bowled very sensibly with his line and length once again creating multiple chances and dropping what would’ve been an absolute hanger off his own bowling.

Unfortunately the Ghosts chased this total down just 1 down showing a display of strong batting shots and discipline. Nonetheless, the Bears will come back stronger with finals hopes still in contention.

3rd Grade Round 13: UTS North Sydney v Campbelltown Camden at Bon Andrews Oval

UTS North Sydney (1/107) (C New 37, F Nixon-Tomko 30*, A Thomas 26*) 16.2 Overs def Campbelltown Camden 103 (36.2 Overs) (N Whyte 3/16, J Graham 3/26)

3s were looking to bounce back vs the Ghosts at Bon Andrews, after last round’s defeat at the hands of Parramatta.

Some game morning COVID pullouts affected the Ghosts lineup and the Bears were keen to bowl first, and did so, after the skipper won the toss.

Nuwan Whyte got the Bears off to a great start bowling one of the openers and the 1st drop to reduce the Ghosts to 2-10. Toby Laybutt (1 for 21 off 8) got in on the act forcing an edge from the other opener that was acrobatically caught by Oscar Jago-Lewis behind the stumps. Toby bowled with great control during his spell and beat the bat on numerous occasions.

Jacob Graham (3 for 26 off 6) was introduced and he tore though the middle order with two wickets caught by Ray Alexander in the gully and another bowled. Ray (1 for 27 off 7) also took a wicket - sharply stumped by OJL. Some late order hitting was quelled by Lindsay (2 for 7 off 4) and Whyte (3 for 16 off 7.2) as the Ghosts were bundled out for 103.

The bonus point was clearly on the mind of the Bears top order with Cameron New (37 off 27) starting the chase positively taking the attack to the Ghosts bowlers, including one six onto the freeway. After New’s dismissal, Finn Nixon-Tomko (30*) and Aidan Thomas (26*) saw the Bears home in a canter, passing the total 1-107 off 16.2 overs.

The Bears remain 5th with a chasing pack behind and in need another strong performance vs the Warriors of Blacktown in Round 14, which is a 2-day fixture at Bon Andrews.

Women's 3rd Grade Round 17: UTS North Sydney v BYE

4th Grade Round 13: UTS North Sydney v Campbelltown Camden at Raby 2

UTS North Sydney 6/126 (36.1 Overs) (A Perry 35*) def Campbelltown Camden 125 (48.4 Overs) (B Wilson 3/16, S Balbi 3/26, V Kumar 2/25)

The Bears made the trek down the M7 early than expected on Saturday morning due to forecasted sweltering heat conditions, forcing the match to begin an hour earlier than scheduled at 9am AEDT.

Perry won the toss and as per regular programming for an ODI fixture chose to bowl first. There was a significant amount of dew on the ground due to rain earlier in the week, and the pitch liked ripe for the picking of the seam attack of Wilson, Charles and Balbi.

Wilson began with a ferocious intensity, terrorising the Ghosts openers on both sides of the bat, while King Charles kept the other end locked down with a consistent line and length. Wilson struck not once but twice with the new pill, trapping one opener leg before then sent his partner to join him shortly after knocking over his castle.

After a tight opening spell, the pair handed the reigns over to Kumar and Balbi, the later instantly taking the game by the scruff of the neck, using the pitch to his advantage cutting the ball round corners. Balbi picked up first, second and third drop all leg before or bowled, announcing his return to form in style.

Charles returned for a second spell and had an instant impact, picking up a wicket first ball – he finished his 10 overs with 4 maidens, a testament to his consistent line and length.

Kumar and Singh then did the rest with the help of Wilson, Dilraj picking up a wicket on his birthday caught behind by the skipper. Wilson picking up the final wicket of the innings, his third for the day. The hosts bundled out for 125, a far from clinical effort from a normally polished bowling line up, 18 of those runs in extras, and seven no balls – allowing for a significant number of free hits.

The chase was a tail of batsmen getting in, but not going on with it. 4 of the top 5 getting past 10, but being dismissed before 15. However, this meant there was no collapse as such, and the run rate ticked along nicely. The pitch getting lower and slower, not an easy wicket to navigate, batsmen all being caught playing aggressive strokes.

Perry navigated the side home from when he entered in at 4/50, negating to go for the bonus point and stabilise the innings with a steady fall of wickets to start the innings. They passed the target in the 36th over after a bizarre 30 minute lightening delay with 12 runs required.

Although the side could have used a bonus point with the table tightening towards the end of the season, the six points was valuable, with Parramatta dropping points to Fairfield, making the final two weeks of the season a dog fight to get the 2nd seed behind Manly Warringah.

Next up on the agenda, a trip to Whalan Oval to take on Blacktown Mounties in a 2-day fixture.

5th Grade Round 13: UTS North Sydney v Campbelltown Camden at Tunks International Sports Park

UTS North Sydney 3/50 (12.3) Overs def Campbelltown Camden 48 (22.2 Overs) (A MacGill 7/27, E Omar 2/1)

The predicted hot, sunny day greeted the Bears as they arrived at Tunks International Sport Park, but the Tunks doctor was blowing in off the water, providing valued relief throughout the day. The boys were keen to get their season back on track with a big win against a struggling Ghosts outfit. Skipper Chris Lloyd won the toss and decided to bowl on a good looking wicket, choosing to play the history of the pitch rather than the look.

This decision paid off handsomely. Returning opening bowler Alex MacGill tore through the top order, taking 6 wickets in his first 4.4 overs and effectively ending whatever resistance they could have put up. His display of intelligent fast bowling, coupled with excellent support from Tom Cole (1/6 off 6 overs), saw Campbelltown fall to 8/33 off 13.2 overs at the drinks break. MacGill eventually finished his 10 straight overs with the figures of 7/27, pocketing the coveted player of the round award in the process. His decisions about what to bowl were particularly impressive, with wickets falling in a myriad of ways. By the end of his spell, he was toying with the opposition, moving fielders in the deep for the short ball before producing fuller deliveries that were far too good. After drinks, Campbelltown battled through a few unproductive overs before Eesa Omar put them out of their misery, coming on to take the final 2 wickets off 1.2 overs for just a solitary run. Only a single boundary had been hit all innings, showing the control and domination of all the bowlers over their rivals. Ghosts were all out off 22.2 overs for a vastly under par 48.

After a 10 minute turn-around, the Bears set out to chase the runs and a bonus point. Both openers fell early, with the Ghost’s opening bowlers producing good control on what was a pretty good wicket. Chris Lloyd was joined by Eesa Omar, with the pair playing positively and looking to knock off the total quickly. Omar fell for 13 with the target in sight, skying a length ball with just 3 left to win. That left Lloyd just enough time to bomb the gentle leg spinner over cover in the next over and finish the chase in just 12.3 overs. A win and a bonus point were secured after just over 2 hours play, and as other results trickled in 5th grade had re-established a 10 point led at the top of the table with 2 rounds remaining.

Brewer Shield Round 17: UTS North Sydney v Gordon at Killara Oval

UTS North Sydney 1/96 (22.2 Overs) (S Julien 48*, S Kuncham 32*) def Gordon 9/95 (32 Overs) (E Aitken 3/10, S Julien 2/19)

This week’s report will be short because the Bears Brewer Shield team made short work of Gordon. A fact that was not lost on Michelle, who brought an interesting fact to our collective attention. The female Bears had never defeated Gordon in any women’s match. Ever! Until today that is. Sorry for the spoilers.

A violent storm the previous evening had dislodged the edge of the large wicket square cover and was threatening to derail the match as several patches on the wicket square resembled a mud pie. However, the Bears stood firm and ignored attempts by the opposition to tempt us with an unsatisfying draw. After waiting patiently, a few friendly ball games with the opposition and a game of cricket trivia, the square had dried sufficiently for proceedings to begin.

The Bears won the toss and elected to bowl, with an eye on a late afternoon bonus point run chase. Madeleine Winslow continued her good form with the new ball and skittled the opener early on, a ring in from the washed out second grade match. A short stand then developed until Adelaide Hicks was introduced into the attack and the second opener departed in the same vein. The Bears then methodically dismembered the Gordon batting lineup, with Shiloh Julien claiming one wicket, Sharon Julien artfully dispatching two on debut and Emily Aitken claiming three. The fielding on a heartbreakingly shabby looking Killara Oval was a highlight of the performance. The girls threw themselves around and frustrated the dwindling Gordon batting lineup. Karman Jawanda’s performance with the gloves was again instrumental in the win, with two remarkable catches behind the stumps off the spinners. After thirty-two overs, the Gordon team only managed ninety-five runs.

The batting innings very much went to script. Liz Buckley made a lively start, striking an early boundary before being dismissed chasing quick runs. This brought Sam Kuncham to the crease and she combined with Shiloh to easily knock off the runs in twenty-two overs. The rest of the batting order put their feet up as Shiloh compiled a composed unbeaten 48 and Sam finished with a strong 32 not out. Our girls are now looking forward to their clash with Manly at North Sydney Oval in Round 18.

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