Week 21 Wrap vs Mosman, Universities and Manly-Warringah

1st Grade Round 14: UTS North Sydney vs Mosman at North Sydney Oval

UTS North Sydney 146 (TA Jagot 33, M Jenkins 29) v Mosman 1/15

February / March is the rainy season in Sydney Grade Cricket and this was once again the case in the Round 14 clash with local rivals Mosman. A delayed start was followed by a vital toss that went the way of the Whales and, after a little hesitation on the part of the Mosman skipper, UTS North Sydney were asked to face the music on a difficult pitch. Openers James and Atherton appeared relatively unfazed by the conditions, absorbing plenty of balls and moving the total along to 27 before James (12) was dismissed in over 8. Atherton, who looked very good for his 18 including four boundaries despite the slow outfield, fell shortly after and the Bears were suddenly 2/31 from 9 overs. Both wickets were sharp catches taken by Whales veteran keeper, Ash Doolan, standing up to the quicks.

The Whales also got Bariol early to have the Bears struggling at 3/43 in the 13th over. A mini fightback from Jagot and Reynolds either side of lunch pushed the score to 78 before Reynolds was out stumped, a fine piece of work down the leg side by that man Doolan again! Three further quick ones, including the prized scalp of Jagot (33) had the Bears deeper in trouble at 7/84. During his innings, Tom brought up his 4,000th First Grade run for the club, only the 21st member of that elite group, and he is now just 41 short of 1,000 for the season.

After the collapse, Mac Jenkins and James Aitken (17) combined patiently to take the score beyond 100, putting on 39 for the eighth wicket. But just as we started to get some momentum, a faint edge from Aitken carried through to Doolan (standing up, yet again) and the Bears were 8/123. Jenkins combined with Matt Alexander (14) to add another valuable 22 runs to the total, but he was caught and bowled by his left-arm spin opposite number Luke Shelton for a well-made 28. The tough runs made by this pair, and in particular Jenkins, has been one of the defining features of our season and could yet prove decisive in this match. The final pair added one more run before Matt Alexander fell victim of the unluckiest of dismissals in cricket – the run out off a deflection from the bowler and the Bears were skittled for 146 in 67.1 overs.

This left half an hour’s play in the day and an opportunity to grab a couple of poles to give the team a chance. James Campbell’s first ball yielded a big appeal, and later in the over one dropped just short of the poised close fielder. However, Alexander achieved success in his second over courtesy of a screaming catch by James Aitken in the gully. When stumps were called after seven overs, Mosman were 1/15. It will take a committed effort and a bit of luck next week to defend the moderate total, but cricket is a funny game and anything can happen while finals hopes are still alive.

2nd Grade Round 14: UTS North Sydney vs Mosman at Allan Border Oval

North Sydney 202 (RD Alexander 40, S Alexander 35, C Spratt 34, A Cavenor 28) v Mosman 0/8

On yet another rain affected day of cricket, the Second Grade Bears travelled to Allan Border Oval with high spirits from last week’s big win against a strong Northern District side.

With rumours of Samoz being involved in preparing this week’s deck it was clear what both sides were looking to do once the coin had been tossed. Despite being sent in on a typical green top, both openers looked to get the side off to a solid start when the game got under way some 20 minutes late. Chris Spratt was unfazed by the conditions and took the attack to the bowlers early with picturesque, lofted drives down the ground. With the score on 30 after 5 overs, momentum was halted by yet another rain delay, which brought about the dismissals of Jordan Vilensky and Spratty shortly after the resumption of play.

Glenn Aitken was positive and looked in great touch in his innings before he was dismissed with the score on 70, which brought Adam Cavenor and Ray Alexander together. Both showed the Bears the right way to approach this tough wicket, by valuing their wickets and putting away the bad balls when presented. Cav once again broadcast maturity beyond his years to dig in with the experience of Ray before unfortunately being caught behind down the leg side for a well made 28. Ray continued being the rock for our side alongside Lachy Stewart who had the Bears well placed at tea.

Just when our innings was truly taking shape towards a good total, we lost 4 quick wickets for only 17 runs to be 8/149. This included Ray, who had compiled a strong 40, and Lachy Stewart, who was unlucky to be victim of a stunning catch, then Kobe Allison and Nuwan Whyte were dismissed cheaply.

Enter the undisputed world’s best no. 9 (an upgrade from Australia’s best, as advertised on his social media profiles), Sam Alexander, and joining him was the king of red ink, Benjamin Knox, in the 53rd over. They knitted well from the first delivery and fought to push our innings towards a respectable total. Both lads were focused from ball one and would not let anything get in their way of securing a respectable first innings total. Play was briefly halted when Samoz thought it would be a good idea to use his helmet instead of the willow whilst walking at the bowler, and after a quick health check, the boys got back to business with an array of shots that was a treat to watch from the stands. The 53-run partnership off 174 deliveries was broken when Samoz was dismissed, to which his teammates stood and applauded in recognition of his highest grade-cricket score of 35!

Harrison May slashed early and we were to be bowled out for 202 with Knox the not out batsman on 14. The feeling in the sheds during the innings change was animated at the opportunity to defend the total.

With the dwindling light and 6:30pm cut-off fast approaching, a short and very sharp spell from Kobe Allison set the tone in which we will fight next week with Mosman on 0/8 overnight. All in all, a somewhat solid performance from the Bears this week with many fighting starts but unfortunately no one could go on to make a big score. Special mention to Adam Cavenor who was selected to captain the CHS 1st XI - good luck mate!!

3rd Grade Round 14: UTS North Sydney vs Mosman at Bon Andrews

Mosman 110 (JD Graham 4/18, FJ Noack 3/23, B Wilson 2/21) v UTS North Sydney 3/70 (JD Graham 41*)

Smattered amongst an onslaught of rain, we managed to get onto the park at the scheduled 12.15pm. After being on the back foot the previous two weeks, the 3s team full of youth and vigour understood the task at hand and the sheer importance of a win this round.

Warming up well and hitting our strides confidently, Ash Bishop-Perrott led from the front with Yak (Jacob Graham) to enable us a sound warm-up. Hats off to Ash, he is a huge asset and valued volunteer!

Having a chance at a bowl, we executed very well (after Fletcher May’s Steven Harmison-like start) to have Brad Wilson and Fletcher knocking over the stumps. Fletcher (1/18 off 8) gave into his white line fever and celebrated with his down on one knee Binga-style roar.

Fraser (3/23 off 11) and Yak (4/18 off 8) continued to apply pressure and discipline to have the visitors reeling and looking lost. This including one young man, Mr Gregory West, who fronted up at no. 5 for a brief innings only to have Yak Graham pin him in-front LBW. Fraser Noack really took the bull by the horns and was on a hat-trick before we had Castaway Pelican Mr Bradley Wilson take a pearler caught and bowled to have the innings brick-walled at a mere 110.

Finn Nixon-Tomko started well and played with fluidity and poise before a premature departure. Luca Smith joined the club and clipped the Whales opening bowler over the fence but couldn’t cash in. Yak “Engagement Party” Graham really knuckled down and was excellent in his shots down the ground. His approach to the innings (41*) at the top set the tone and gave us a real shot for a win in week 2. We closed 3/70, 41 to go!!

Look forward to continuing this positive momentum lads. Be hungry, be foolish

4th Grade Round 14: UTS North Sydney vs Mosman at Rawson Oval

Mosman 40 (C Savage 5/15, P Lindsay 2/10, S Balbi 2/14) & 1/2 v UTS North Sydney 6/84 dec (C Rose 31, D Thorat 27)

Local intelligence reports were swirling regarding the state of the Rawson Oval pitch, prior to the Round 14 clash between Mosman and UTS NSDCC. Win the toss and bowl was the common theme.

Worryingly, skipper Lindsay’s record at the toss had been poor and, when the Bears arrived at a damp Rawson Oval, panic set it. Nevertheless, it appeared the Mosman skipper was in a longer run of outs at the toss, and when tails saluted the Whales were inserted.

A comical runout was secured in the 1st over before the light drizzle forced the players off after 8 balls. On our return Chris Savage (5/15) confirmed he was a class above, destroying the Mosman top order in tandem with Sol Balbi (2/14). At one stage Mosman were 4/4 and then 7/14.

The wicket was a little tacky and the Bears quicks took full toll, pitching the ball up and grabbing the rewards. All wickets to fall (bar the run out) were bowled, LBW or caught behind the wicket, confirming that the Bears got their lengths spot on. The fielding was sharp with all chances taken and Mosman were dismissed for 40 in the 26th over.

This set the game up for the Bears to try and take the 6 points before the close of play and then ideally push on to position ourselves for a tilt at 10 points.

We had a little wobble at 3/24 pushing for quick runs, however Dhruva Thorat (27) and Charlie Rose (31) continued where they left off from the week before to pass the Whales’ total and then lift the tempo with a view to making Mosman bat again.

Indeed a declaration was called with Norths 6/84 and in front by 44 runs. Three overs were left in the day and that man again Savage took his 6th for the day to have Mosman 1/2 and 42 runs in arrears.

4s will look to push hard for the 10 points next week, having performed brilliantly to secure first innings points with only 54 overs possible on the first day.

5th Grade Round 14: UTS North Sydney vs Mosman at Tunks International Sports Park

Mosman 156 (A Rana 4/17, AC MacGill 2/20) v UTS North Sydney 4/19)

A rainy morning threatened the commencement of the first day of yet another two-day game in Round 14. However, the weather gods were feeling forgiving this week as play started as scheduled.

UTS North Sydney won the toss and elected to bowl, requiring an outright to keep their slim finals hopes alive. The team could not have wished for a better start, with Alex MacGill trapping one opener leg before in the first over, and Archie Wright dismissing the other in the second over sending the batsman’s off stump cartwheeling and leaving the visiting Whales 2/0 off two.

The third wicket fell after a mini fightback from Mosman, Aidan Bennett having the number 3 caught at cover point by debutant James Edwards. Wickets fell continuously over the course of the day, however there was one constant for the visitors, their number 4, who posted 79 whilst riding plenty of luck, before MacGill claimed his wicket.

Aki Rana was on a hat-trick at one stage, and bowled brilliantly finishing with an economical 4/17 from 13 overs. Jaiveer Dhanoa (1/30) also bowled tightly, continuing his good form from the previous game and was unlucky not to have had more wickets. Veteran Fudge Atshan also chimed in with a crucial wicket to break the tail open. Keeper Brad Spiby was brilliant behind the stumps taking five catches in his first game back from an extended absence from the game, after moving to Sydney from Perth.

However, despite all the positive performances, it was one of those days for the Bears in the field, as Mosman ended up with 156, when it very easily could have been under 100 if chances had been taken throughout the day. It was a spirited bowling performance nonetheless.

With the bowling and fielding effort complete, the rest of the day can only be described as a disaster, with the Bears limping to 4/19, after a brilliant opening spell from the Mosman bowlers. The Green Shield due of Dilraj Singh and Rana will be required to lead the fightback with a full day to play on Saturday, and another 137 runs needed for victory.

Brewer Shield Round 17: UTS North Sydney vs Manly-Warringah at Bon Andrews

Manly-Warringah 150 (I Keating 5/12) def UTS North Sydney 100

Due to Covid this was our first game against Manly this season, and the Bears were looking forward to the challenge of taking on the team in 4th place. Lucy again won the toss and, after reviewing the pitch and consulting with the groundsman, we decided it was a good day to bowl first. The girls started the day relaxed, playing music whilst doing the fielding warm-ups which seemed to work well as the concentration levels were better than we have seen in recent weeks.

Again the opening bowlers got us off to a good start with some tight bowling but were unable to snag an early wicket, the score being 0/22 after 7 overs. Charlotte Moss was particularly miserly with 7 overs, 4 maidens, no wicket for 9. This was followed by a couple of expensive overs but the change in mindset of the batsmen allowed Grace Keating (5 overs 1/21) to pick up the first wicket, clean bowling one of the openers. Lucy Warren then followed this up with some tight line and length bowling leading to an uppishly hit drive and a great catch by Grace leaving Manly at 2/42. The two new batsmen then built a really good partnership with the game was starting to get away from UTS North Sydney at 2/81 after 20 overs. Mabel Oxenham then broke the partnership with a good catch from India Keating - the score at 3/88. The story of the morning had been some excellent bowling punctuated all too often with a full toss which was dispatched the boundary, luck also seemed to have deserted us with some thick edges at catchable heights racing through a vacant first slip to the boundary and a number of misfields costing us runs. This allowed the score to blow out to 3/136 after 29 overs.

At that point Grace again influenced the game with a superb run-out. Not to be outdone, her sister India Keating followed the brilliant fielding up with a wicket on the next ball. A couple of overs later there was some more some sharp fielding from Liz Buckley hitting the stumps after surprising the batsman by gathering in a well hit drive. Next over, India picked up another with the Bears clawing their way right back into the game at 7/149 and bowling with confidence. India was not yet done, taking three wickets in her last over to close out the innings and join the Victor Emery club with 5/12, the first ever 5 wicket haul in Brewers history. Manly had collapsed to be all out for 150 losing their last 7 wickets for just 10 runs!

The chase began well with the first ball of the innings being swept for 4 runs but yet again we lost a wicket in the first over with Liz being caught behind. Her new opening partner Bianca Lozell backed up an excellent job behind the stumps with a solid 6 off 36 balls, seeing off the opening bowlers. Grace Keating again got a start before spooning one up to mid-on to be out for 15. We lost another quick wicket to be struggling at 3/35 after just over 10 overs. Tuvini Jayakody then dug in as she has had to a number of times in recent weeks, rebuilding the innings with a well played 16 off 42 balls. However, the game was slipping away with wickets falling regularly at the other end taking the score to 6/56 after 20 overs.

At this point, India Keating strode the crease with a kit bag full of confidence and some simple advice from the interim coach to have fun. Hitting boundaries is the best way to have fun as a batsman, and India took the advice literally blasting 21 of 14 balls showing what confidence does for your batting. Unfortunately, after this cameo providing hope that we may still be a chance to track down the total, we reverted to the regular fall of wickets to be all out for 100, falling 50 runs short of the target. Our recent batting form is a good demonstration of what happens when you go five weeks without the opportunity to bat at training and aren't putting in the work yourself.

It was a very Keating scorecard on Sunday with only one wicket falling without the involvement of either one or the other sister (combining for 6/31, 3 catches, 1 run-out & 36 off 34 balls!).

Women’s 3rd Grade Limited Overs Round 7: UTS North Sydney vs Universities at Tonbridge Park

Match abandoned with no play

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Media courtesy of Tony Johnson, David James, Sarah Berman, Greg Buckley and team captains.