Week 5 Wrap vs UNSW, Bankstown and Manly

1st Grade Round 3: UTS North Sydney vs UNSW at David Phillips South Oval

UTS North Sydney 7d/375 (J Avendano 161, TL Reynolds 74, TA Jagot 32 JN James 25) drew UNSW 2/86 (W Graham 1/21, J Campbell 1/25)

Despite overnight rain and the threat of more to come, the game got underway on time with the Bears declaring and James Campbell starting with a maiden. Matt Alexander opened from the Golf Course end and after 5 overs UNSW had reached 19 without loss. Will Graham was also given an opportunity with the new ball, replacing Alexander, but it was Campbell who made the first breakthrough in the 9th over with a confident lbw shout to have UNSW 1/28. Graham (1/21) continued, bowling in tandem with Campbell to claim the second UNSW scalp in the second over after a short rain delay courtesy of a nice catch to sub fielder Izaak Merlehan at mid on (who was filling in for Justin Avendano) to have UNSW 2/42. Alexander (0/27) came back on for his second spell to replace Campbell, while left arm tweaker Mac Jenkins replaced Graham in a double change after 17 overs. Jenkins bowled 4 tidy overs before another rain delay sent players from the field.

Upon return, Mac completed a total of 6 overs for 13 runs and was replaced by another tweaker in Jack James, who got 4 balls into his spell before rain caused a further halt to proceedings. In a stop-start day, James eventually completed 3 full overs – all maidens. James Campbell then bowled the final two balls of the game to finish with 11.1 overs 1/25 as the rain set in. The game was called at around 4pm when the two captains shook hands.

The draw places the 1st Grade side in 8th position, but 6 points adrift of 6th place. Interestingly, we will take on 7th placed Western Suburbs next week in a one day game and must win to maintain our position ahead of the pack. From an individual player perspective, it is great to see Justin Avendano leading the run aggregates early in the season with 257 runs @ 86. Thomas Jagot is not too far behind on 181 runs in 11th spot.

2nd Grade Round 3: UTS North Sydney vs UNSW at Tunks Park

UTS North Sydney 220 (G Aitken 109, N Whyte 25) drew UNSW 5/140 (R Alexander 1/10, S Alexander 1/11, N Whyte 1/49, H May 1/60)

UNSW resumed at 0/25 chasing our modest total of 220 with the Bears needing 10 wickets to secure victory. Harrison May bowled in tandem with Nuwan Whyte to open the proceedings for the home side. The two quicks toiled, hard bowling 10 overs and keeping the runs in check. However, the lads were unable to dislodge the two openers who had moved the score past 50 runs.

A breakthrough in the Big Horse’s 6th over courtesy of a James Leary run out from cover and the dismissal of ex-Bear David Barber, clean bowled with the middle stump cartwheeling, in Nuwan’s (1/49) next over brought some life into the game at 2/55. However, the boys were unable to capitalise as the Bees reached triple figures two wickets down. However, with the hundred on the board Ray Alexander (1/10) was introduced to let loose some of his seamers resulting in the dismissal of the other opener and all of sudden it was 3/101 and game back on.

Harrison (1/60) was eventually rewarded for his toil with the score on 129 and a lengthy rain delay followed. In what can only be described as a miracle, we got back on around 5.30 but it was short lived. With what was to be the last ball of the day, Sam Alexander (1/11) got a wicket to leave UNSW 5/140, still 81 runs short of our first innings total.

Had the weather not intervened it would have been a very interesting finish – probably going down to the wire as is typical of the way this second grade team plays and fights to the end.

1st Grade T20 Round 2: UTS North Sydney v UNSW at David Phillips Oval

UNSW 4/139 (J Campbell 2/34, JN James 1/17 S Alexander 1/21) def by UTS North Sydney 4/140 (18.3 overs) (B Atherton 36 (38), J Avendano 30* (23), A Bariol 29 (17))

On a soggy Sunday the UTS North Sydney Bears fronted up to David Phillips Oval South twice in two days to take on the Bumblebees in a T20 fixture. Remarkably, the game got underway only 10 minutes late and, after winning the toss, captain Justin Avendano sent the opposition in to get a better idea of how the pitch was playing.

From the first ball, the Bears played like a well-oiled machine with every team member playing their part. It started with two tight overs from Mac Jenkins and Matt Alexander who went for just 4 runs from the first two overs. The Bees took the momentum back momentarily as they hit Jenkins for 13 runs in the third over and then consecutive sixes off James Campbells’ first over. Jimmy got his revenge grabbing the first UNSW wicket in the same over, with a straightforward catch taken by Jack James at cover. Jack then bowled the fifth over for 3 runs before Campbell claimed his second wicket in two overs, this time caught by Matt Alexander at cover point and the Bees were 2/40 at the end of the powerplay with both openers back in the pavilion.

The loss of the second wicket brought ex- Australian One Day and T20 player Dan Christian to the crease. Bowling to Christian, Sam Alexander bowled a tidy over giving away just four singles before handing over to his brother, Matt who steamed in from the gold course end. The bowling rotation moved on to Robbie Aitken in the 9th over, once again tightening the screws on the Bees batsmen who could only manage two singles. Spin was doing the trick for the Bears with Mac going for four singles in his third over to leave the Bees 2/60 at the half way point.

The ball was then given to Jack James to bowl his second over and the opportunity to bowl to Christian, who was setting himself for a big innings after a measured start. After delivering four balls to Isherwood, Jack stared down Christian at the other end, who immediately took him on, hitting a thick edge over the keeper to come back for two. The final ball of the over was an arm ball, that cramped Christian who hit it into the safe hands of James Campbell at mid-wicket and Christian had to go with UNSW 3/67 and the Bears rampant.

New batsman Brandon McLean formed a fruitful partnership with Isherwood combining singles and the odd big shot as the spin bowling rotation continued with Samoz, Robbie, Jack and back to Mac, bringing the hundred up after 16 overs. With 24 balls to go, the quicks were brought back, but the Uni batsman seemed to enjoy the pace and kicked away again to reach 133 by the end of the 19th. Sam Alexander bowled the last and, with Isherwood (46) unable to get him away, he attempted a ramp shot that ended with the leg stump being dislodged. This tidy over conceded just six and left the home side with 4/139 on the board. It didn’t feel enough on a small ground, but conditions were clearly far from ideal for batting.

The run chase started with Tom Jagot and Brent Atherton, and 10 runs to Tom from the first over. Both players were aggressive with the field up, netting 27 runs from the first 4 overs. Dan Christian bowled the fifth over and, after taking him for a four and a single to the leg side, Tom moved across his stumps to add to his total. He unfortunately missed the ball that cannoned into his thigh and, with a big appeal, he was given out lbw for an excellent 24 off 19. UNSW made it two in two overs with the wicket of Tim Reynolds and the Bears were 2/39 at the end of the powerplay.

Aiden Bariol then combined beautifully with Atherton, putting together a fifty-run partnership from 32 balls to elevate the Bears to 2/87 from 11 overs. When Aiden was dismissed for 29 off 17 balls in the next over, the Bears had progressed to 93 and needed a further 47 for victory from 48 balls. New man Justin Avendano looked at home in his new role as a middle order player, immediately getting off the mark. A few overs later Brent (36 off 38) gave Christian his second scalp in his return to Premier Cricket.

It was then left to Avendano (30* off 23) and Jack James (14* off 13) to finish the job by scoring the remaining 32 runs. They did so with nine balls to spare to complete the first win of the T20 tournament for the black and red team. As suggested by Avendano “It was a much needed confidence boost for the team” and the win was even sweeter with the knowledge that all other games in the round were called off because of the weather.

Th game also received a write up on the Premier cricket site – click here to read that article.

Brewer Shield Round 2 T20: UTS North Sydney v Bankstown at Bankstown Oval

Bankstown 1/127 def UTS North Sydney 9/83 (C Thomas 13, Z Ridgway 13, G Keating 10, MR Oxenham 10)

The Bears went into the game against Bankstown missing their most valuable asset (their coach, Michelle Goszko) but they still turned up with a positive attitude and were ready to go. Assistant coach, Michael Keating, took advantage of the 30-minute delay, to do some additional work on running between the wickets with the girls. Captain Lucy Warren and her advisors had looked at the pitch, taking into account the wet pitch and our historical improved performance when bowling first and decided we should have a bowl. Lucy then judiciously lost the toss, knowing that Bankstown would choose to bat first.

The girls got off to a solid start bowling good lines, however were struggling to stem the tide of quick singles as former Bear Mridula Thirupathy and her opening partner were determined to turn every ball hit into runs. The Bears fought back and were then able to stem the tide by bringing on Mabel Oxenham and Grace Keating, taking the pace off the ball and bringing in the field, keeping them to 0/50 after 12 overs. Unfortunately, with no wickets down Bankstown were then able to launch an all-out assault, being super aggressive and scoring 77 in the last 8 overs, to finish on 127. There was one reward in the field in the shape of a run out to Zoey Ridgway.

Given the girls do not traditionally score at this type of run rate, the decision was made to tinker with the batting order and Liz Buckley was promoted to open the batting and sent out with the instructions to push the singles and run hard. She set the tone of the day with a loud call of yes on the second ball of the day while she streaked to the danger end. The girls took a big step forward in their evolution as a cricket team by following suit and continuing to take quick singles off balls inside the circle throughout the match. At 1/30 off 6, the top order had set a good platform to chase down the runs, but unfortunately Bankstown’s player of the day Chrissa Stathis, fresh from scoring 59 not out was able to elicit a little swing and seam from the drying pitch, to take a couple of quick wickets.

Caitlin Thomas was again solid in the middle order providing much needed stability and Zoey Ridgway was impressive in her debut game for the Bears finishing as the not out batsman with 13 off 16 deliveries. Whilst a number of girls got starts, no one was able to go on with it and carve out the innings that we needed to chase down the total. Overwhelmingly, everyone from both sides was impressed with the girls’ attitude and the fact that they never once gave up on chasing the total down.

Women's 3rd Grade Round 2 T20: UTS North Sydney v Manly at Tunks International Sports Park

UTS North Sydney 8/87 (H Blackburn 33* (40), A Gibbons 13 (20)) def by Manly 3/89 (13 overs) (A Dongre 1/9, S Elliott 1/13, E Buckley 1/24)

Amazingly the third grade girls managed to get a full game in on Saturday, despite all the rain around (with great thanks to Bernie-the-Awesome groundskeeper and his super-sopper). UTS North Sydney showed an improved performance from the previous week in all aspects of the game. Captain Hetti Blackburn starred with the bat, retiring not out on 33* - a knock that included 6 fours. Hetti was well supported by Amy Gibbons who scored 13 from 20, as well as Liz Buckley 8 from 5 and Sherrie Elliott & Zoey Ridgway (on debut) who both made five runs and importantly hung around with their captain. The 87 runs scored by UTS North Sydney was a 15-run improvement over last week's performance against the same opposition.

Sherrie Elliott bowled brilliantly to pick up her first wicket in only her second game of cricket ever, with figures of 3 overs 1/13, and Jasmeet Bedi showed enormous improvement in her bowling, bringing back 2 overs 0/5. Anushka Dongre followed up last week's great bowling with another excellent 3 overs 1/9. Catch of the day, or possibly the season, was from Bella Bursill at deep fine leg, holding a well-struck skier to enormous cheers from all her teammates. Manly won the match on 3/89 when rain stopped play in the 13th over.

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