Ian Higgins has now been providing his take on cricket at Gordon since the 2005/06 season. Ian's early attempts to ruffle the feathers of stalwart Richard Stobo were well reveived by Gordon supporters. Ian's reports became legendary with his quick wit and sometimes direct statements that rarely missed the mark (except for one report on the condition of the Chatswood Oval pitch).
(Missy in 2006)
With the 2012-13 season now with us Missy will continue his dialogue with members through his column and through his very popular Missy's Podcast. You can catch up on all of Missy's mails below:
So look out for this icon on the front page.
So the Pakistani match fixers are going to gaol. In a hallow victory for cricket lovers worldwide, Salmon Butt, Mohammed’s Asif and Aamer along with player agent Mazhar Majeed were sentenced to varying tenures behind bars after sentencing was handed down last Thursday in a London court.
Mohammed Asif - sentenced in a London court
I’ve followed this story closely having been exposed to the English media coverage over the past few years since the now infamously defunct newspaper News of The World broke the story in the northern summer of 2010. It is inexplicably sad story. As a cricket patriot, it hurts me to the core to read about the goings on of that fateful Lords test match. Most notably, the notion that Mohammed Asif received the lions share of the ‘earned’ money in an attempt to keep him faithful from rival match fixing syndicates. It is beyond comprehension.
Justice Jeremy Cooke (presumed brother of Alistair) summed up proceedings nicely: “Now whenever people look back on a surprising event in a game or a surprising result, or whenever in the future there are surprising events or results, followers of the game will be left to wonder whether there has been fixing and whether what they have been watching is a genuine contest between bat and ball.”
One can only think back to other fixtures involving Pakistan and consider if spectators were better off spending their money on tickets to The Enmore Theatre. Are we, as Australian supporters, so arrogant to think that the SCG test match at the beginning of 2010 was purely an outstanding showing of Australian resilience and dogged determination? What about when Mike Hussey managed to blast 22 from the last over off Saeed Ajmahl in the Twenty20 World Cup semi final to win the match? Was that sheer skill and execution or scripted entertainment for a few extra Rupee? It’s impossible to tell.
After learning that Aamer had appealed his sentence, I could only hope that he made the “T” sign to Justice Cooke in confirmation that he would like the decision reviewed. In my opinion, if he failed to seize this once in a lifetime opportunity, it would be worse than the initial crime itself.
Mohammed Aamer has appealed his sentence
It seems an incredible thing, to be prisoned for bowling or conspiring to bowl a no-ball in a cricket match. As I recently posted on Facebook, Murali would be looking at 25 to life had he still been playing. I remember Courtney Walsh getting balls in from the boundary with a straighter arm.
It’s amazing to me to think that not many of Gordon’s current playing members will remember the likes of Courtney Walsh and other legends of the late 80’s early 90’s who I grew up watching and imitating in the backyard, but i suppose those even more venerable than myself would say the same about players they grew up aspiring to. Dick Huey, for instance, was the official scorer for Don Bradman’s last test match at The Oval in 1948. There is still some conjecture over why Bradman’s final innings read “0”, despite him playing a memorable cover drive for four from his first delivery. Minor detail I suppose.
Regardless of days and summers gone by, it’s important to keep up to date. Some people set their homepage to the Sydney Morning Herald’s website or ninemsn in aid to always keep in tune with current affairs. My homepage however, is Reece Bombas’ Facebook profile. It’s more interesting than the conventional news, more outrageous than tabloid magazines and updates are released more often than bodily sounds from Kurt Roughley’s body.
Reece Bombas enjoys being the meat in the sandwich
Here are some old favourites of mine from Reece in recent history, in no particular, although comedic order:
- “My loose weekend has just started get on it!”
- “Im on the prowl any takers haha”
- “Everyone get to the beery getting blind!”
- “When u think theres no where to go another path reappears ! :).…”
- “Getting on it at terrigal!”
- “Kicking on at woodies so filthy!”
- “Beery sesh anyone?”
- “Beery sesh was awesome!”
- “does not know wat to do with himself haha…”
- “Rowdy weekend i think yes!”
- “Has discovered that he might be an alcoholic!”
- “Girls are professionals at pushing away boys who care about them!”
- “Go hard or go home simple as that!”
- “Every girl is crazy for guys with blue eyes!”
- “Standing up right is becoming very hard at the beery!”
- “Money for nothing and chicks for free!”
- “Beery sessh feeling pretty blind!”
- “has got alot of frustration to let loose!!!”
- “Its times like this i wish i had a girlfriend!”
- “my sisters say i’m desperate lol”
Great stuff from the King of the Coast. Don’t worry about ‘Neighbours’, don’t worry about recording ‘Home and Away’, Bomber’s life is better than a week long marathon of ‘Eastenders’. In between notifying his friends about how drunk he is - which i assatain is an important part of life on the central coast - Reece has more mood swings than a hormonal teenage girl. Proclamations of deep anxiety are quickly swept aside with declarations of inferable happiness. His manifestations are as bewilderingly benevolent toward an unnamed flame as they are belligerent to whom ever has wronged him within the 14 minutes since his last status update.
I speak for all those concerned that ’King of the Coast’, or just ‘KOC’ as he prefers, will soon find love and that his status updates will resemble Blair Lindsey’s rather than that of a rambling buffoon.
As for you Blair, I get it, you’ve got a girlfriend.
And speaking of ‘Kings’ - if I can be so brazen to label the assiduous postings of Reece as monarchical - let us now move onto Iain Beverley’s newest creation; The King of The Round.
Blair Lindsay, is this one of your girlfriends?
I like the idea of it. I like the idea that we should be rewarding acts of manliness and courage and hard behaviour, but like communism, this is only a good idea in theory. Because as I look around the circle on our Thursday club meetings I see a lot of very well educated young men with very good career prospects.
Some real life problems the Gordon players have already had this year include; not having an electrical outlet to plug their iPhone into, having an HD TV which takes an eternity to turn on, having so many notes in a wallet it’s uncomfortable to sit on, and having to fire a maid for boorish etiquette. These people don’t need to do things that are hard, we pay other people to do things we proclaim to be too hard. Blue collar workers, Labor voters, we don’t have them and we don’t need them. I am, of course, only jesting.
We do have a couple of people who drive vans and other Utility vehicles, or “Utes” as they say in the trade I believe. Let’s run through that list shall we and see how ‘hard’ they are.
Beau Sadler: Works in the trades as a roofer of some notoriety. Can not go 23 seconds without touching someone or something. Not hard.
Anthony Sherman: Claims to be a landscaper which angers actual landscapers. Germaphobe. Not hard.
Craig Thornborough: Engineer. Looks good in the colour blue, has an apartment with a water view. Not hard.
Greg Lewis: Please.
We all know there is only 1 hard bloke in this whole club and that man is Carl Kinghorne.
Carl Kinghorne: Crimefighter under the alias of “Knighthawk”. Has a tattoo on his calf of Ned Kelly. Why? Unknown. Has an autobiography entitled “Knighthawk in shining armour”. Has Chopper Reid, Chuck Norris, John Ibrahim, Tony Wilson in his phonebook. Once killed a man just by looking at him. Doesn’t glove punch.
And onto glove punching. Maybe it’s because I started playing underneath the strict regime of Ed Howitt from a young age, or maybe it’s because I didn’t grow up on an island in the Caribbean, but glove punching is reserved solely for those with the tropics in their blood, who play with flare and charisma and phonetic pageantry. Not for those who play club cricket in Sydney. Viv Richards can glove punch. Brian Lara? Go on then. Dwayne Bravo? Give a little knuckle to Chris Gayle.
But you Cockburn, you can not. I bet you glove punch. I can just tell you glove punch.
I think we’re onto knuckles now - and let me tell you, the Cedric Pike stand has been busy this Spring. Not as much action in the Justin Avendano stand so far, but the Avendano stand is more of a Summer/Autumn meeting place.
Celebrity cricketer - Avendano - is a hit with the ladies now more than ever!
I don’t know how it has come about that teenagers from all over the area have decided that the best form of expressing their lolita love is to take their significant other to a grandstand at Chatswood Oval to perform what’s now known within certain circles as “losing a knuckle”. It won’t be long before Secretary Catlin will be sitting there at all hours, forming an overnight vigil to ward off any hopeful youths, waylaying the convivial plans of the adolescent to lose a knuckle in the Cedric Pike. In between both grandstands and “Fingers Hill” half of the Chatswood population will be knocked up by Christmas. I do love a girl in uniform though.
I’ve been trying to think of some ideas to fundraise for our great club, other than an Adam Cubbage kissing booth which would obviously generate a swarmed frenzy not seen since The Beatles landed in Australia in 1964 and I think I’ve come up with a tremendous solution.
A Mark O’Neil Swear Jar. If everyone at the club donated 10c into an offshore account every time our top grade coach dropped a four letter bomb, we’d be able to cryogenically unfreeze Sir Don (minor complication may arise here, as I’m fairly certain Bradman was cremated and not cryogenically frozen like Walt Disney) and get him playing for the Stags by round 9. He’d obviously have to start in 5th grade as he would arrive with no credentials, but it’s important to keep numbers up. Catlin would charge him the full price of subscription as he will have missed the deadline for the price reduction. $600 was a lot of money in 1948 - although he did bowl leg spin, so a Wilson hand out isn’t off the cards.
I seem to of drifted off topic there. Again. Sparky loves an adjective though doesn’t he.
I have to mention Ed Howitt jnr before we part ways, as he achieved an absolutely incredible accomplishment in round 3. I’m not convinced he received the fanfare that the occasion deserved, and it’s difficult to actually put into words how, quite simply, unbelievable it is.
A junior looking Ed Howitt Jnr
Perhaps the most telling statistic is that he now joins only 3 other players in the history of Gordon to reach 500 wickets and 5,000 runs. 3 other players. It’s amazing. I’m at a rare loss for words. I literally don’t know what to say. I’m astounded.
(Editor's Note - Please see related story on Ed Howitt's Toast night on 3 December 2011 at the Orchard Tavern)
A better writer would describe to you the constant effort in application, the undeniable competitiveness, the mental longevity and tact it takes to reach such a level of conclusiveness. If there’s a better club man than Hoppa, I’ve never met him. I flicked through the photos and read the articles and the tributes and a touch of envy sank over me that I wasn’t there to witness it first hand. I was at Killara for 400 and that was pretty special, but 500 is a different level of apotheosis.
I cast my mind back to days when I would stand behind the stumps with obsequious expectation as he would roll out a few leg spinners to mid-off before shuffling to the crease in a way that lay calm to the fielding team. He had the ball on a string most days. Every time I kept to him, whether it be in 2nd grade or 3rd grade, something always happened - usually byes. I want to be able to tell you all about how he coaxed and strained his wickets with presence and insidious disguise, how he was lionised by umpires, officials and opposing captains, how altruistic he was as a captain, a mentor, a coach and a friend.
But all I can think about is Sunil Turkey and how ridiculous a name that really is.
Missy's Mail 30
Women talk genuine rubbish.
Whilst men discuss such issues as what number out of 10 that bird on SBS was last night, or who was the best five-eighth/PM/wheel of fortune assistant of all time, women are examining the finer, more intricate details of life as we know it. As i sat in my hairdresser's salon, having my tips highlighted, my roots softened and my nails sharpened - all for a reported $435 - I overheard her say, nearly boasting, that she had recently told her boyfriend that he must be doing a good job because she "usually gets a 3 year itch".
It irks Missy that no-one raises an eyebrow when Benny Garratt gets a bowl these days
This idiotic statement, declared with a hint of arrogance but an altogether straight face was followed up with a "I totally know what you mean".
Sorry. What? What are you talking about? How can you usually get a 3 year itch?
It's that kind of statement that makes your brain come to a painfully screeching halt and makes you spend the rest of the day, sometimes life, contemplating if what you just heard and if it was actually layered with hidden meaning or symbolism, or if it is in fact that most ludicrous social commentary you are likely to hear this side of Mars. Or Venus as the case may be.
Then I received a text from a friend of mine in London which equally made as much sense to me as the time the groundsman at Sydney University defended his pitch preparation by saying "the wicket is wet because I've got a round shed."
His text to me read as follows: "reading an article in the Sunday Telegraph this morning on the state of Australian cricket... there are also very few spinners, not least because white Australia has yet to integrate properly with the south Asian population."
First of all, racial vilification aside, I wasn't aware there had been a recent influx of finger and over-the-wrist bowlers developing their craft in Singapore. I must have missed that. Secondly, England seem to be of the opinion that any country remotely in the same agreed alignment as their own counts as England. When Will Swanton, or even Peter Roebuck, start questioning why 'England' (if they still classify as that) are yet to tap into the ever-growing resource of hard hitting all-rounders churning out of Belarus, Dubrovnik and Istanbul, then I'll take this particular Sunday Telegraph readers point as valid. Until then, bring on the Ashes I say. Let's hope it's a truly memorable series and the team holding the most valid passports wins 3 no balls to 1.
Another thing that has been getting Missy's goat, which I assure you is a metaphor - I don't actually own a goat, is the number of bowlers used this season in all grades. The likes of Livermore, J. Packman, even your mate Cockburn has been getting betting a roll. As for Missy, his career tally for total number of grade overs remains at zero. Now bloody Ellyse Perry is getting a bowl. Where will the madness end.
Missy's only overs representing Gordon came in a PG's fixture at Manly Oval. Manly notched up 340 from their allotted overs and Higgins was tossed the ball in the 42nd over. 4 overs, 0 wickets, for 36. Evidently this 9 an over display impressed no one but himself. Unbelievable. A leg spinner at Gordon not getting a bowl, you wouldn't read about it. Missy's goal for the year is not to reach the finals, or hit 500 runs, it's to get 1 over and keep it to under 36. Everyone knows he's the best wind bowler in grade cricket. When it's windy get Missy on. Anyway, there are far more pressing issues to attend to in this, the 30th edition of Missy's Mail. In the words of Zsa Zsa Gabor's 7th husband on their wedding night 'i know what i'm supposed to do, but how can i make it interesting'.
No photos of Missy bowling on file, only a handful of him posing for the camera
First of all, a large congratulations to Dave Millar who has won the heart of his long term girlfriend Sarah 'Doosra' Zipfinger and will wed her in the coming months in a small ceremony at Beauchamp Oval. Rumoured to be Millar's best man, Anthony Sherman will also tie the knot in the opposing side of the joint dressing room at Gordon's 3rd home ground. However, Pic's news does not end with the announcement of a mere engagement. Sherman will also become a first time father in early 2011. Sources close to the man of the hour say the likely name of the child will be 'Bella' in honour of his beloved hound and one time border security patrol-person of Chatswood Oval.
In response to the news, close friend of both Millar and Sherman, a teary Damon Livermore was quoted as saying "I'm just so happy for the both of these guys. I always knew they'd find true love and now that the dream has finally become reality, well, I'll be bringing an extra hanky for the reception." Clearly, the hormones Reg is taking are severely altering his demeanour.
But what a tremendous start to the 2010/2011 campaign it has been for the Stags. Gordon sit a prosperous 6th after as many rounds, the weather seems to be making a turn for the consistently good once more and Missy is donning the finest 'tash the North Shore has seen, or will ever likely see again in this era of metro-sexualism.
Gordon's inaugural poker evening was a wild success with Tony Wilsons 17th son, Harry Evans, taking home the prize and bragging rights for at least 12 months. His victory coming as no surprise as an unnamed investor was seen giving Evans numerous opportunities for endless 'buy-ins'. His win over short priced favourite Alex Lines, who had apparently won $40,000 at a poker tournament a week before (although I've heard several reports altering the prize money won. There's a good chance he won a sausage roll and a pat on the back) is surely one of the greatest moment achieved by a former Knox student since.... well... the invention of apple sauce.
The waitress was an interesting combination of cultured and Kurt Roughley. I'm not sure which tertiary institution she attended, but her sleeve of tattoos was well received by Reece Bombas - an avid ink supporter. It did, albeit naively, surprise me how comfortable young Britney was with her own body and I imagine it also surprised the two young Asian ladies walking around Chatswood Oval who caught a glimpse of the bare drink server. Beverley had a crack. Of course he did. They don't call him 'Fingers Beverley' for nothing I suppose.
Beverley having a crack - this time on the field
The big news this week is that of James Campbell becoming a man and joining the real world of full time work. Not many will know, but JC has been accepted at an architectural firm in a starting position. This excited me for many reasons. One is that this may mean he may be able to pay me back for the 903 Vodka Pineapples I bought him a few weeks ago, but secondly and more importantly it will mean that his thoughts will be heard by so many more than just the 10 other lucky Gordonites he graces his ideas with every Saturday. Aside from sleeping in on his first day, arriving 2 hours late, having to borrow a work shirt from his mate across the road (E. Richtor) who cuts grass for a living, everything has run smoothly for the man who will likely add many interesting pieces to Sydney's and the world's skyline to come.
And on that note, of looking into the future and living in wonder of what tomorrow may bring, Missy feels a touch of reverse nostalgia. 30 Mails have appeared to fly by and i wonder what we will be chewing over in Missy's Mail 60. We can but only predict what lies ahead.
Here's a sample;
Justin Avendano will captain Australia, and in honour of his achievements (though predominately at Northern Districts) Gordon will rename the Cedric Pike Stand, The Pockets Avendano Stand. Sunday through Friday it will remain a place for lolita love to occur coupled with under age cask wine drinking and Missy will continue to sleep there most Saturday evenings throughout the summer months.
Mitch Kleem will be hosting his own radio talk back show called, initially "Mitch and Famous" and later "Kleeming with the stars". He will spend 4 days a week talking to Dick Huey about greyhound racing and Marcus on the political unrest in South East Asia.
Justice Will Sweeney will sentence Dan Lake to 15 years imprisonment under the 3 strikes policy.
Greg Lewis will play for his 23rd grade club.
Ed Howitt will be in a relationship, yet remain unmarried.
Harry Turner will finally tell Nick Franklin what he really thinks of him, causing huge social divide within the club. The Socs vs The Greasers. I now understand that 90% of the club will be too young to understand that last one.
Finally, Missy will marry Ellyse Perry - who will be captaining second grade at Gordon - in a selfish plot to finally get his first over in grade cricket. The marriage amongst other things will fall apart after she insists on continuing to bowl Jordan Liddle's 3rd child ahead of him.
Missy's Mail 29
I've been looking at the names on the list of pre-season teams our faithful selectors have elected. I see some old ones, mostly new ones and the odd ridiculous one. How can you pronounce 'ck' as 'o'. It doesn't make any sense Cockburn. Some chap named Kinghorn played 2 weeks ago. You don't see him gallivanting around, introducing himself as Knighthawk. I don't know you Kinghorn, but i like you better than Cockburn already. I saw the name Medcalf listed in the teams for Round 1. A shiver ran down my spine. Soggy Sao anyone?
Tom 'Shaft' Co(ck)burn
So who wouldn't take a hundred grand to bowl a couple of no-balls? Tell you what, i wouldn't be writing this article if i played international cricket for Pakistan - which can't be too far away can it? The thing i like most is that Kamran Akmal was interviewed by Scotland Yard over his involvement in the match fixing scandal after some inconsistent wicket keeping performances, which it must be said was about as suprising as seeing Harry Evans without a shirt on. Unfortunately for Kamran, he was not match fixing. He is just genuinely awful at wicket keeping. Poor bloke. I can relate to his pain. But ultimately Pakistan are terrific for the game.
I think Test matches would be a little more lively if we all started punting on which direction the first wide will be bowled, or how many studs Salman Butt will have on his left boot, or how many species of bird are nesting in Mohammed Yousefs beard.
My guess is 7.
Anyway, you haven't come here to read about the inner workings of Missy's brain. You've come here by accident, because you mistakingly clicked 'Like' on Gordon's new facebook page rather than liking your really funny mate's, girlfriend's brother's status. But you're here now, so might as well catch up on the news of all the players who have returned from overseas. In case you don't know we've had 5 players in the UK this winter, each with their own story to tell.
Will 'Wilbur' Sweeney
We'll start in the north with your mate Will Sweeney, who's summered in Barnesly with his team Aston Hall. His modest total of 16 wickets has been hindered by some characteristic time off the field with injury. The last time he played 5 games in a row, Icarus flew too close to the sun and the time after that he and his brother - a wooly mammoth named Derek - were caught in an ice age. Classic Sweeney. I've been informed, however, that his time working in Sheffield's 'Walkabout' has been far more fruitful for the burly paceman. Wilbur returns only a few short days before Saturdays commencement of the Sydney season.
Slightly West of Sweeney is Iqbal Ahmed - playing for Parkhead Cricket Club, situated in Sheffield. Inzi was once known as 'The Peoples Champion' due to his overwhelming popularity. These days, he's as beloved and heralded as Rob Oakeshott's speech writer.
Inz managed to whip up 4 scores of 50+ on his way to 563 aggregate runs, most likely all through mid-wicket and take 24 wickets through his crafty leg spin. Unfortunately for those who enjoy the future Pakistan captain's company (even though he's half Indian) the great man will not be gracing Chatswood Oval (and by Chatswood Oval, i mean wherever 5th grade play. I was only made aware we have more than 2 teams this afternoon) until Christmas as he further seeks his pursuit of the perfect bride.
I think he said bride. Although he may have said bribe now that i think about it.
I'm not sure how he intends on travelling to so many countries with only a back pack and what 72 virgins have to do with anything i'm not sure, but the mystique behind the man nicknamed 'SuperHyderabad' has always moved in mysterious ways. Ever the centre of attention, Ahmed decided to rip all the ligaments in his ankle a matter of days before he was due to set off for South America. His travel plans are now in limbo.
Iqbal "Inzi" Ahmed up to his usual antics
In 1958 Hanna-Barbera had a vision, and that vision was Yogi Bear. But Yogi Bear and his lovable cravings for picnic baskets was not enough for the humble viewer. It needed something more. That something more came in the form of the engaging sidekick known as 'Boo Boo Bear', more commonly known today as Adam Cubbage who played his cricket in Wellingborough for Irchester this southern winter. Boo Boo hit 453 runs and took 15 league wickets. Cricket and stealing packed lunches aside, the real question is; who has broken more hearts? Boo Boo or Casanova? Judging by the frowny faces on his facebook page... Casanova. By plenty.
I need Steve Colley to do something ridiculous. In the meantime i nothing him. Here are some stats:
Team: Ashby Hastings
Runs: 584 @ 30
Wickets: 24 - BB 5/58
Have a word Colley!
From one extreme to the other, Elliot 'Panadol' Richtor had his consecutive season at Shenfield CC in Essex. 'Biscuits' had a good return of 505 at 35 with the blade, including a fine 110*.
One of his two other hundreds, albeit in a Sunday league, was epic. 175* off 9 balls including a million sixes. What a legend. I keep checking to see if we're still facebook friends. So far, so good. I also follow him (not on twitter, i literally follow him). I don't know how he did it, but he returned home alive after "visiting a mate" in Ibiza. Apparently Panadol is really cheap there. I reckon he probably swam home. Judging by the pictures he must have, he was really wet.
Cubbage, Colley and Pommy Poysden living it up
Missy, like El Richo, had his second year running in the UK for Surrey outfit Farnham CC. He posted 3 league hundreds on his way to 616 season runs at 41.
However his greatest achievement came upon touchdown at Kingsford Smith airport this week. The pilot's 14 Pinot Noir's started to take effect as the wheels screeched against the tarmac. The back end of the plane threw itself out as if it Reece Bombas' super cool and not at all embarrassing car. A cry hailed out amongst the cheap seats, passengers clenched their arm rests, air stewards sent off final prayers. The co-pilot battled against his machine to regain control of the aircraft.
A fed up and predominately red-eyed Higgins exclaimed 'ANY DANGER?'
Whole cabin laughter.
Missy 'good in England' Higgins
Missy's Mail 28
Oh what, so Hamish Angus is a dual 1st grade representative. Am I supposed to be impressed? Where were my accolades when I drank a glass of pheromones?
Where was my write up when I had dual modelling representation? The whole thing is a farce in my opinion. He's got a beautiful physique though. Doesn't he?
Perhaps Hamish could join you in the modelling industry Missy?
Why do they have to grow up?
I've started this latest edition of the Mail with about 96 questions, and I feel it is reflective of my mood. Why is it that Fester carries a black stocking in his cricket kit? Why is Reg's facebook activity dwindling? Why has James Kennedy joined matchmaker.com? There are seemingly all good answers for those queries, but there is no answer for the mystery that surrounds Will Sweeney's black eye.
Sweens has been spending his winter in Barnsley, near Sheffield, playing for Aston Hall ' a club Brett Rosen represented a few moons ago. Rumours were rife when he surfaced from a kebab house at 3am with a swollen retina and blackened cheek. Could he not handle the 'double beef and chilli lamb sandwich'? Was it an allergic reaction to 'Donny's Late Night Kebabs' secret sauce? One thing is for sure though on an unrelated topic, northern women are strong, and our beloved William was no match for the might of a certain young lass. At least he got a phone number.
After taking 5/42 in the first round, Sweens has picked up wickets steadily and sits on a respectable 15 for the season thus far. It must be very difficult to see that front line out of one bloodshot eye to be fair to him.
Sheffield is a beautiful part of the world. I've never been, but I've wikipedia'd it and I feel like I can save myself the '70 train fare to get the jist. Iqbal Ahmed is playing for Parkhead CC in Sheffield ' adding to the long list of reasons I feel no urge to go there. Ikky has picked up 11 victims this summer, including 4 in one attack. His 182 runs coming at around 22, including a fine 65 which lead to one local commenting 'it was great to see the big man bombing them all over the place!'
It's great to see the big man anytime, anyplace - especially at The Walkabout.
Iqbal is renowned for his off field antics, once claiming that he out drank Richard Kenner. Ahmed's appearance in the Sheffield Times, albeit brief, was due to his late night visit to the kitchen of Sheffields Australian Bar 'The Walkabout' to make himself some chips. You can imagine the owners surprise when he walked in to see Iqbal elbow deep in chip oil.
I feel that threatening him with a knife was a little out of order, but never the less, if I had a dollar for everytime Inzi has broken into a kitchen, well, I feel confident I could solve the recession. Or at least reduce interest rates.
Slightly south of where the sun goes to die, is Leicestershire. Steve Colley ' on his first season abroad ' is playing for Ashby Hastings. I haven't heard much from the young man, which is really to his own detriment because it gives me free reign over what I can make up. Questions have been raised about whether or not Steve will be returning with some extra baggage on his ring finger, but as per usual, Coll kept his cards close to his boyish chest and refused to comment.
It is understood that Kris Colley has had an argument with his elder brother over being snubbed as best man for the engagement by the family's bowling machine. When questioned further, the bowling machine cranked up to 95, with strong left to right bias, and I swiftly left the premises. Justin Avendano's bowling machine is said to be distraught.
Colls has had a great season to date, leading his clubs run scoring with 372 runs at a tick under 30 ' including 2 scores of 50+. Most notably however, he has claimed 19 wickets including a 5 wicket hall. Ben Garratt will tell you, it takes a real man to get wickets in England.
Go on Steve, get a little closer to your fianc'e - Pic can give you all the tips
As we travel a little further south we find the half man, half bear, and two thirds wolf, Adam Cubbage. Aside from spending up to 56 hours a week waxing different parts of his anatomy Cubby has been in Northamptonshire cricketing for Irchester.
Although he has amassed a decent 282 runs at 25, including a 76, he has somewhat disappointingly only rolled out the 55 overs for the summer yielding 6 wickets.
It has been a difficult time for Cubbage, who's motive for returning to the UK after a 3 year absence can only be put down to his life-long journey of finding a compatible soul mate. Cubby has searched through wardrobes, comb factories down the back of the couch, in the shower and numerous other places where random bits of hair are found.
Cubbage shows his support for Northhants District in a way only he can!
Adam has been receiving payments from a variety of wig manufacturers over the years for his very delicate and evidently rare shoulder, back, inner thigh and behind-the-knee hair that is scarcely found on living organisms under the age of 103. Wax on Cubby. Wax off.
To the east of London is Elliot Richtor who's playing for Shenfield in Essex. The good news is that he has broken the UK drought that the poor bloke had to endure last year. Fortunately, he will be having no confusion over names as he has shacked up with a certain bird who's name he has recently had inked on his neck. El-Richo, who played for Shenfield very successfully last season, has returned 307 runs at 28 with 3 scores above 50 in 2010. He may very well have taken more than the 13 wickets he has already collected, had it not been for a number of weeks sidelined due to a severe finger injury. The phone line was poor when we spoke, but he said that he popped something. I couldn't make out what though. I do hope he's taken his headache tablets. I know how dizzy he can get after a day in the sun. Richo is heading off to Ibiza in a few weeks time for a couple of days of R&R.
And then there is Missy, crafting his trade in Surrey ' south west of London ' for Farnham CC, the same club he played for in 2009. His reasonable return of 315 runs at 31 including a lazy 120 does not tell the full story of a summer lived on impulse, exploration and penetration. I'm sure my fellow Stags are enjoying their northern hemisphere summers as much as I am. Tell our mums we are in good health and to vote Liberal. I don't care for this Julian Gillard chap ' very feminine.
Finally, I feel it would be reckless, nay, careless for me to neglect to mention Brendan McDonald moving on from the club. As sad as it is to see a tremendous first grade cricketer leave our borders for the rose lined streets of the Adelaide Oval, one must admire his strength of character to chase his dream of one day being accepted into the Catholic Church.
Good luck BMac. Thanks for the great times!
Every word that needs to be said about B-Mac has already been done so, but let me on behalf of all the playing group here at Gordon DCC wish him every ounce of luck that he genuinely deserves. He has been so many things to so many people at our gracious club and I think it's a fair compliment to say that he has earned everything that the cricketing world will hopefully offer him.
But to be honest, we owe it to Jules Stephenson for bringing him to the club.
Missy's Mail 27
27. 27 of these bloody things. I can hardly believe that I've made it this far. It's not so much a time issue. I can believe I've had the time. Evidently I have. It's more so of a 'why' factor. Time is perhaps the greatest commodity we as living beings possess, yet everywhere you go you see people wasting time. Look at you right now; wasting time. How many hits does Facepage and Mybook get per minute? Trillions probably. The internet is but one example of the human race looking for things to occupy time. Sure, there are 'time savers' such as the McDonalds drive thru, but is it really saving you any time by driving 9 kilometres out of your way so you can order your food through what is essentially a giant walkie-talkie?
I often hear people say 'there just aren't enough hours in the day'. I am of the conflicting opinion that there are too many. Get me a day which lasts around 7 or 8 minutes and I'll start to become productive. Speaking of time wasters, that paragraph cost you 2, maybe 3 for you slower readers, minutes of your life that you will never see again. So what's say we get cracking.
The best thing about not writing a Mail for an extended period of time is that people always ask you when the next one is coming out. Of course, there are other benefits too. I can actually give factual news about players rather than scribing fictional (and subsequently more humorous) anecdotes. The downside is that because such a time has passed, I have forgotten most of it.
The first thing that comes to mind is the retiring of Julian Stephenson. Julie-Hahn, Midnight, Stepho, call him what you like, he was a tremendous club man. People will remember him as many things. A great bowler, a laugh a minute kind of character, Paul's son, that guy who takes 900 Neurofan per training. So many memories, no doubt Midnight's greatest achievement however was bringing Brendan McDonald to the club. I'm not sure if the parade ever occurred, but if anyone ever deserved one, it was Jules.
My fondest memory was way back in 2007, when Missy was donning the gauntlets in 2nd grade. We had Blacktown in a world of trouble at Killara on Day 2. Jules had returned from an injury, as was so rarely the case in his career, and bowling at a lively pace. He bowled a savagely aggressive delivery short of a length, the nervy batsman pushed his gloves in front of his grill - mainly for protection. The ball softly pressed the batsman's mits and slowly, almost agonisingly, looped to a thankful Missy who took the easiest catch any fielder in the history of any ball sport ever has taken. Ever.
A rare photo of Stephenson with pads - 200pts
A fired up Stephenson came steaming down the wicket, Shirvington-esqe, frothing at the mouth like a dog full of rabies, he gnarled to Higgins; 'If you had f'n dropped that I would have ripped your f'n balls off with my teeth'. And that to me is Jules Stephenson in a nutshell. As competitive as a dog against it's own tail, with a touch of humour, and slightly gay.
In all seriousness, I will miss Jules tremendously. What an enormous loss to the club he will be. Not only his god given talent with the ball, but his training ethic, his never say die competitiveness and his love for the game. You can't fluke taking 40 wickets in a season in any grade, let alone the top one. Gordon are a lesser club without him. He also owes me $23.50.
In related news I hear Paul Stephenson is selling a camera. Not to mention some website space.
I often find it hard to keep up with the ins and outs of a lot of players. Either I don't know them - through choice (yes Cockburn this is directed at you. I don't know why you think it's ok to come up and casually talk to me as if we're mates. Maybe it's my fault. Maybe I let off some sort of vibe telling you that I like you, or even respect you. I don't. If you wish to communicate with me, please go through the appropriate channels just like all the other Missy groupies)' I've lost my place.. That damn Cockburn gets me all wound up. I've completely forgotten what I was saying but the point is Pat Effeney's hair looks like it's been cut with a spade.
Reece Bombas' car. I'm confused by what message he is trying to send out. Part of me thinks it's a cry for help - ironically what most of his passengers end up doing. Another part of me thinks he wants to be Paul Walker in The Fast and Furious. And the other part of me is thirsty. Not thirsty for answers or solutions; if Bomber wants to look like Corey Worthington, then so be it, no, I am quite literally thirsty.
Does anyone else find this man, Cockburn, gets you all wound up?
'Why are you thirsty Missy?' I hear you query. Well why don't you stop asking so many questions and I'll tell you.
It's hot as I write this. And not just standard, everyday, city-hot. I'm talking sitting in an oven in Penrith, with a ski jacket and a beanie hot. You know when you check the forecast and see that it's going to be a lovely and rather seasonable 27 degrees city, but 106 out west? That's the life I'm living at the moment. So hot that even the coldest, most expensive, most Mark Taylor endorsed air conditioning system can only ever cool you as much as a 90 year old blowing through a straw in Bangalore.
Not only can you cook an egg on the driveway, I'm almost certain you can spit roast a pig in about 45 minutes on any open stretch of boulevard exposed to an ounce of sunlight.
Parking your car in a garage is about as popular as a collared shirt - it's all about who can display their Holden Commodores on the front lawn the best. Evidently it is impossible to place an empty bottle of beer in a bin. Instead, smashing your completed beverage container on the tarmac is as accepted as any Cold Chisel cover band. It's a fascinating place; one which is very different to most of my readers lives surrounding the harbour. There are no caf' lattes, there are no pretentious dogs dressed in designer labels, there are no hoaxes masquerading in Mercedes, Reg.
Cockburn wouldn't last 5 minutes out here. It's remarkable Missy, with all his attractiveness and almost unfairly defined features, (not to mention his ridiculous hair and ludicrous jeans) has managed to not be greeted with some steel in his body. Believe me when I say 'I'm touching wood'. Euphemism.
But Missy's news is all very small time compared to Hamish Angus' fianc', Tora Bright, who has won Australia's first legitimate gold medal in the Winter Olympics, which wasn't won via default or every other competitor falling over. There is no news as to whether Hamish will keep his name or accept her proposal of being called Hamish Bright. Time will tell I suppose.
Speaking of engagements, 4th grade is soon expecting to have a regular 12th man (other than that 'Manager' bloke). Yes it's true, Shayne Lin will marry Terrence. Many of you won't know Terrence, in fact I think it's fair to say Shayne'o doesn't even know him that well. They met at a fantastic place in one of Sydney's great clubs in the early hours of the morning. Apparently, it's a place just for guys. Guys who love to dance. If you want to take off your shirt - that's cool too. There is no judgement and no hassle of trying to impress women, just great guys having great fun. I also hear there are none of those urinals in the men's bathroom, it's all stalls. Exactly the privacy I'm after. Sometimes in a night club it can be too loud for a conversation, so this nightclub is totally ok with taking a friend, or stranger, into the stall with you and having a chat. Seems like a great place to really get to know a mate. I'm taking Sweens this weekend.
The morning after the night before - Shayne Lin - a little blurry, just like his memory
They're having a small commitment ceremony this Saturday. I believe a parade is also planned. Seems a bit over the top to me. I think having a man behind Shayne will really help his cricket. Best of luck to them both.
Pic is also engaged.
But there are many people at the club who are not engaged, and I would briefly like to dwell on them for the moment. Actually, no I wouldn't. But I'll leave you on this point; if Josh Poysden is getting lucky, then so should Harry Evans. I don't actually know what that means, but it sounds poignant.
Missy's Mail 26
It's funny how often cricket imitates life. We as amateurs often have busy and strenuous lives outside of our weekend hobby. I've never seen a professional who is good at cricket be good at life. However, seeing as my knowledge of professional's lives extends as far as James Packman, perhaps this is a moot point. From my own perspective i have noted on numerous occasions that if my week involves fewer laughs than a 'Hey Hey It's Saturday!' reunion, then invariably i will be given out leg before after hooking down to fine leg. Conversely, if my week involves some work bench action, i am almost guaranteed to be dropped more times than a 1st graders name in a Brett Rosen story on my way to a pretty 30.
Missy's professional cricketing acquaintance - James Packman
Cricketers are a superstitious bunch too. Left pad on first, sweat band on right arm, don't wash the lucky socks, shave the fun zone on Thursday. I think it comes about from a common perception that there is a higher power controlling our destiny's. If you succeed one week, you are almost always going to simulate your actions from what time you brushed your teeth to how much sugar was on the Weet-Bix the following Saturday. For many of us though it's "i won't go out this Friday".
Cricket in all ways; a session, a day, a match, a season has peaks and troughs more so than any other game. It can be as thrilling as a drama, as climatic as an aforementioned work bench, and on occasion as dull as a Friday night at home. No game is as equally mental as it is physical. It is a test of a player's personality, not only of their ability. The weak are thrown out, only the strong survive. Basic instincts are the basis of the game. This makes cricket the most human of sports and hence why we, as amateurs, give up so much of our lives in pursuit of a successful Saturday.
Missy just hasn't had any time to himself of late. FIFA 10 came out on the Playstation 3 a few weeks ago and I'm already up to my 3rd season on Manager Mode. Henry "Kama Sutra" Carmichael has been banging on about Guitar Hero, so another investment may be required there. I must read his self titled book now that I think of it. He seems to know a lot about the way females bend.
This brings me to the beauty of Missy's Mail, and according to Perez Hilton, all internet blogs/columns. There are so many new faces at the club who are unexposed to the harsh realities of The Mail. It's a beautiful thing, and truth be told, if it wasn't for Missy's Mail, fee payers like Justin Avendano wouldn't even be on the map. Manuel will be displeased that I referred to his son as the fee payer, as I'm sure Justin himself isn't forking over several hundred AUD's to be registered each summer' but then of course there are a few I could put in this category.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Manuel for his hospitality the other evening. The Avendano's entertained Missy on a Thursday evening after training and I must say, it was quite the affair. Next week I believe James Kidd's mother will be cooking up her renowned meatloaf for Missy. He's quite popular amongst the cougars.
Manuel, it looks like the Mantra might be a better option!
As great as it is to see some new faces, mostly covered with acne, it's even better to rekindle friendships with the ghosts of players past. The Moth, Stores, D-Rich, Digger, Fester and other players with nicknames have all come back to the club this year for a wide range of stints. Some more temporary than others. With a reported return of The Angry Ant who has been representing Victoria for the past 5 years, Gordon looks to add some experience to its youthful ranks. Once Medcalf can find time away from his recent overtaking of the Arnott's "Sao" brand and Emile from his 9th rhinoplasty operation, the club will take a more distinctive shape. Missy appears to be growing his hair again. It's like we've gone back in time.
There comes a point in every season when my mind is filled with questions. Missy gets confused very easily, but sometimes he is surrounded by such trivialities he often has to sit down and compose himself. For instance; why does Anthony "Wizz" Sherman get his girlfriend to pour apple juice on him, yet he swears he hates apple juice? Why/How does Wizz have a girlfriend? How is Michael Kleem a published writer? Why doesn't Matty Kleem remember when Fester punched him in the back of the head? Why doesn't Morton Kleem write in poem form anymore? When is the parade for Julian Stephenson, for bringing Brendon MacDonald to the club?
Then there is Rob Edwards. I'm not sure how to approach our NSW U/35 representative. I feel like there's a joke and he's the only one in on it. FIGJAM as Tom Cockburn has been calling him (by the way Tom - we need to discuss the pronunciation of your last name. I'm no expert [I am] but I do not see a 'gh' at any stage in your surname. Please reintroduce yourself to everyone in the club - and I'm assuming your life - with the correct annunciation. Regards.) ... I lost my place. I was thinking about seeing a doctor. Ah yes, FIGJAM. I personally don't understand the nickname. I've heard that Phil Mickleson is often referred to as FIGJAM amongst players on the PGA, so maybe Rob is a phenomenal golfer. It wouldn't surprise me, he's good at everything else he does. Or maybe he just really likes making jam. Either way, I'm not calling him Zac Effron as he claims many others do due to his "triple threat".
Phil Mickelson, really good at golf, just ask him
I need to sit down again.
So much has happened over the first few rounds it seems like ages ago when James Packman got married, congratulations to him. Although you wouldn't believe it by the amount of social visits he has been gifting to the club. I don't know what happens when you get married but I think the purpose of the game is to see your partner as little as possible. The amount of "one mores" I've had with Matthew Kelly adds up to be about a week long bender.
Congratulations also to my mate Elliot "Disco" Richtor for his promotion into the top grade. I remember blah blah nostalgic story, well done Ells, you are now better than your brother. A fantastic debut from the younger Richtor saw him field for day one and then watch the team bat on the second. At least Missy has dropped a catch in 1st grade. Do something Richtor!
Iqbal Ahmed (what Mail wouldn't be complete without a mention of the people's champion?) has reportedly not only been losing weight, but transferring the lost pounds to Will Sweeney, whose knees must surely by now be as useful as a jumper in January, Dylan's bat, Hoppa's comb, Josh Poysden's accent, and Missy's driver's license. I had noticed Sweeney had gone a shade darker, however, so it's not all bad news for the nicest bowler in grade cricket.
Congratulations to my new favourite play Michael Dalrymple who ended the career of one of Australia's hairiest men, Adam Cubbage. I've never met you Dalrymple, but you're alright with me. Hopefully I get dropped sooner rather than later so we can talk. Until then, don't approach me. Speaking of Cubbage, it's Missy's understanding that Cubbage recently had his back waxed. A violent reaction to the waxing saw his back resemble Missy's crotchal region from a few seasons back after an infamous trip to Bondi via the back roads. Bless you Adam. You're now my 8th favourite leg-spinner at the club behind Heath Ledgerwood.
Small hairy men remind me of Ritchie Kenner, so maybe we should talk about him now. Ritchie is currently living in Singapore after relocating indefinitely for work. He has been put up in a 5 star apartment and been sampling all that is great in South East Asia. I expect he will try to entertain as many female guests as possible in his new abode, predominately unsuccessfully I imagine. Congratulations to him for finding the right "woman" and living a super happy happy fun time life in Singapore.
My final congratulations must go to the whole club for a fantastic effort against the Tigers. Winning all 5 grades is as infrequent as the 4th grade squad not going to the rocks on a Saturday. The club is not as strong as it has been in the last year or two, but there is some promising talent developing in every grade. It's tremendously pleasing. Once we get some decent wicket keepers at the club I see no limits to the success Gordon can achieve.
Missy's Mail 25
Competitiveness. The fibre of what makes an Australian an Australian. It seperates us, and by 'us' I mean everyone bar Iqbal, from the rest of the world. And by rest of the world I mean Iqbal. This is not to say that our national sporting counterparts are not competitive. Far from it. Indeed I am of the view that all professional sportsmen and Serena Williams are born with a stronger desire to compete and succeed. Certainly more so than your average man on the street. Those who can't compete on a sporting field but are born with this extra strong will, turn into the friend that everyone has, or at least knows, who will constantly one-up you. People do not like them.
My point is that certain countries seem to possess different character traits which strengthen their game and defines them as a team more so than crest which lays upon their aortic pumps. For the green and gold it's a never-say-die competitiveness, Middle Eastern football teams show heart and unity, the All Blacks play with history, the Italians cheat, and the English are passionate.
A fierce battle is ensuing over the small urn to the right
It is this match, nay, battle of passion against competitiveness which makes any England v Australia fixture so mouth watering. The Ashes is the pinnacle of this battle. Like a modern day Waterloo. The winners heralded and paraded, the losers thrown into exile. It is a rivalry so steeped in history (The Ashes, not Napoleon against The Duke of Wellington) it makes the Palestinians and the Israeli's look like a neighbour complaining about a tree branch encroaching on the others property. The British are a proud people and success for them on a global scale has been few and far between. Hek, they still bang on about the 1966 Football World Cup.
The 2005 Ashes series is shown on about 3 different Sky channels nightly. It wouldn't surprise me if people pray to a shrine of Ashley Giles 8 time before breakfast. It is either a very good time to be an Australian living in England or a very very very dangerous time. I recall Alistair Fitzpatrick, now of Mosman fame, returning home with the Kevin Peterson 'skunk' haircut after losing a bet in the UK. 3 Gordon players have braved the onslaught of banter; Ben Garratt, Elliot Richtor and Missy himself.
BG is in Sheffield, Els in Essex, and Missy in Surrey. Rocket is also over here, but he's in Ireland trying to qualify for Prime Minister so I don't care for him.
We'll start with BG in the north as he is also tied up with former Stag and the penultimate overseas player for Gordon, Neil Longhurst. Longers is the captain at Sheffield CC and was kind enough to extend a hand to BG who after recently selling some property in Oz, felt like a stint in the sunny north of England. Unfortunately Garratt has been in the middle of some low scores as the team has been rolled out for less than a hundred on a couple of occasions. This isn't all bad news, as it also must mean that Longhurst isn't scoring runs either. Good news with the bad. Justin Avendano sent me a text this morning (not quite sure how he got my UK number) and told me that BG is shacking up with a nice young bird from Hull named Sherry. Sherry is hoping to receive a baby bonus soon and see's BG as her cash cow. Fair play I say.
Hopefully the weather stays clear for BG so he can hit some form before returning home with Sherry. Their was a level 4 heat wave announced by the government a few weeks back, 2 weeks of beautiful 30 degree sun. Fan-bloody-tastic. Not really a heat wave though is it? Unfortunately, usual service has resumed since those two weeks and summer feels like it's gone to bed. Fingers crossed though.
Whilst back at home - BG's last run in Gordon colours
Elliot Richtor is playing his cricket for Shenfield CC in Essex, North East of London. Anil Kumble's manager sorted him out with the deal. That isn't a joke, he actually did. The Richtor's are big in India. Els has had some success with the blade; 280 runs at 40 including 2 half hundreds. Richo hasn't had many overs though and claimed just the two scalps. Speaking to 'disco' recently he had a great thrill representing his country in an Australian XI v West Indian XI facing up to 57 year old Joel Garner. Old big bird himself. I was convinced that he was bowling 'offies', but Els stands by his claims that he still bowls a heavy ball.
Unfortunately not much chat for El Richo off the field. Such a shame, as Essex girls are renowned for their willingness for a late night cup of tea. We've got to get him into London and sort him out as soon as possible. With the festival season well and truly upon us in the northern hemisphere maybe Els will come more into his element.
On the field, Richtor is amassing plenty of runs
Finally we come to Missy who is playing at Farnham CC in Surrey, south west of the capital. Missy has teamed up with former Stag and actual decent bloke, Guy Hicks who captains the side. Missy has had a good start to the season with 420 runs at 55 including a 135 not out and three scores of 50+. There are some quite handy players floating around in the league. Former England all-rounder Mark Butcher plays the odd game when not on Surrey duty, but most notably Saqulain Mushtaq has played every game for his team this season as he is ineligable for Surrey due to playing in the ICL ' the rebel 20/20 tournament not sanctioned by the ICC. He's claimed a lazy 48 wickets half way through the year bowling his well flighted off-breaks, arm balls and doosra's.
Missy somehow managed to survive a 10 over spell against the Pakistan legend with 208 test match wickets and 288 ODI victims to his name. I actually laughed when he bowled me the doosra. Ridiculous. Hopefully some more runs are on the way so I can be in good form when I captain Colts this southern summer. Off the field' well' Missy would never kiss and tell. Reg's emails do come in handy though. Maybe that's a poor choice of words. Maybe not.
I have only heard small rumblings of news from back home, other news i have written off as fabricated. For example; i choose not to believe that both Packmans are engaged. It's simply not possible. James will no doubt be sending invitations to his Speed Blitz Blues team mates, to which they'll reply "who are you again?" and Moth, well Moth will struggle to find a best man as his best "friends" over the past 15 years have all been female. Apparently Steve Colley was in a car accident, however this also must be untrue as that would mean that he is of age to operate a motor vehicle. Impossible.
Missy enjoying a day off, at the cricket
Dan Lake is currently collaborating with world renowned producer "Timbaland" for his 4th studio album. His motivation behind his lyrics is basically what it's like to "have a ciggy in between maths and p.e. at the Epping bus stop, bro". Mitchell Kleem has been rumoured to be working with Dan on his rhyming scheme. Anthony Sherman has been learning the guitar, simply to prove to his RSVP victims that his dating profile is accurate. Tony Wilson... no... i'll leave Tony alone on this one through fear of repetition.
One thing Missy, along with the entire Sydney Grade Cricket circle, will look forward to this summer is the return to action of Killara Oval. If i never play a game of cricket at Beauchamp Park again it will be to soon. Beauchamp is lovely for post match beers, (held in high regard by Matthew Kelly - a connoisseur of such matters) half-court basketball with your mate "Kevin" and teenage vandalism. Not for cricket. Killara carries a certain romanticism with it. It's a good place for a lap, has an excellent outer ring for bocce, matches are generally high scoring, good pavilion, plenty of shade for spectators and there's always the chance of a casual 'upskirt' being spotted over by the tennis courts. Unfortunately Brittany Spears rarely makes an appearance.
Killara has had some remarkable games of cricket on it in recent history. Nick Cheadle took a hat-trick there (final figures 3-1,000), Parramatta chased 434 in second grade and Higgins narrowly avoided a homo-erotic experience after Dan Mahaffey took 9 wickets in a match against Blacktown. It is also where 4th Grade won the premiership in the clubs centenary year. Brett Rosen has played there. I think that's why i love it so much. When are we changing it to Brett Rosen Oval? Soon i hope.
Well, the time is nearly upon us, and by "us" i mean you. Narrabeen pre-season training. The sessions where everyone checks out the new talent and then writes them off behind their backs to last summers friends. Missy won't be there to run the fitness sessions this year, which i am sure will raise numbers significantly. Maybe Cheads will do it. Or Choppy. Before long Missy and his fellow overseas professionals will be running around Chatswood Oval under lights, taking "hangers" with the white ball from Michael Falk's termite infested Slazenger.
The sunny season is upon us gentleman, go forth toward the light and seek excellence, purity and most of all a schooner or three.
Missy's Mail 24
What makes Will Smith so appealing? Is it his Boyish charm? His athletic build? His crunching back foot play? Whatever it is, one thing is for sure; women love Will Smith. One of the biggest errors a traveller can make is to bring extra baggage. On his last two flights to the sunburnt country, 'Jiggy' has chosen to bring over potential life partners rather than treat Australian women as a personal smorgasbord.
Cheers mate... Will on his last journey down under
Missy has been overheard telling the local talent in an American accent that he is in fact the lead singer of rock band 'Hinder'. A short rendition of 'Lips of an Angel' later and Missy can be seen in the back seat of his car, with said talent. If Missy can pass as an American, surely Smith can do a decent Hugh Grant. Birds love Hugh Grant. Oh, and before I forget it has recently been reported that Hugh, correction, Will has been announced as the captain of Durham for next season. That means extra exposure for Smith. TV interviews and the like. Something to think about Jig.
So it's been around a month since we last spoke (even longer for most of you lower graders) and there is so much to tell in so little time. Although, who are you kidding? If you're on gordoncricket.com you're hardly swamped. Most of you are at work aren't you! Except for you Iqbal. You're not.
Let's start by talking about 1st grade. What a tremendously successful season it has been for the premier side at the club. Not only are they sitting atop the table, but perhaps more importantly they have managed to blood several youngsters into the team, giving them a taste of the top grade. Cameron Eccles, Rob Edwards, Harry Evans and most recently Chad Soper have all played, and played well in their opening fixtures for Nicholson's team. Let's hope their good run of form continues into the new year.
The latest new recruit to 1st Grade... Chad Soper celebrates a wicket
Justin Avendano correctly pointed out to me that Beau Casson must have had flashbacks to when he was in the West Indies, facing Chad in the nets. He's very Dwayne Bravo-esk. He's an excellent source of information is Avendano. He may be quoted further in this piece.
Ever since Missy's Mail was first conceived I have had a hard time getting Anthony Sherman into any edition I have penned. Which is a great shame, because he is a fountain from which outrageous stories are produced. Anyway, at the end of the day, Pic has found love. True love. I can only assume this is the case because how else can someone so afraid of germs make passionate love to someone filled with germs? Love so passionate that he would ask his good friend Mitch Kleem to bare witness to the event, with the possibility of partaking in the love making.
The story goes that Sherman met this girl at a 24 hour convenient store. So transfixed by this unknown beauty, Sherman fiddled around in his pocket for some spare change, desperate to buy the girl a drink (obviously he had a tissue to pick up the coins). Success! He had $4.20, the exact amount to buy a Chocolate milk. Unfortunately Pic spilled the Chocolate milk all over the girl, who's outfit was now ruined. A quick call to Mitchy on speed dial 1 and he was there to pick up his best mate and new love to take back to his place for a scrub down.
Mitch discovered that the girl must have already had an ice cream before the chocolate milk because there were big clumps of chocolate all over the back seat. Mitch's car has smelled like off milk ever since. However, these two are such good mates that no dry cleaning bill will need to be split. Friendship.
The 2008 Christmas party took place on Saturday evening at The Great Northern, with some success. Most of those who attended were over the age of 18. James Packman had a running joke with the bouncer that only James Packman found funny. Beau Casson brought his Baggy Green with him and was showing his prized possession to all the bar staff to get cheap drinks. Richie Kenner was stealing air.
Packman made excuses... but really... Could there be any?
In fact, I think it would be easy to say that 4th grade had the largest showing of any grade at the event this season. Not only are the reserve, reserve, reserve graders winning matches, but they are also coming to together as a team. Plenty of good blokes in 4's, so I've heard. I only talk to Will Sweeney because he used to play 2nd grade.
A few partners turned out for the festive season shin-dig, but Justin Avendano made a very good point that Beau Casson's plus 1, Cassie Casson, looks identical to her Beau. I had never really thought of it until "Embryo" pointed it out to me at the Orchard Tavern.
Speaking of Greenshield, I did have a look over during Tuesdays session to see the under 16's having a run under the careful tutelage of Rod Hokin. Rocket is a good friend of mine, but maybe it's time for Tony Wilson to implement the "Rocket will never captain a side again" campaign towards his coaching. He has installed club legend Stuart Slocombe as his deputy for the forthcoming season. Stuart "Choppy/Toothpaste" Slocombe was transferred for James "Heath" Ledgerwood from Roseville Shires 1st Grade.
Choppy had some interesting insights into cricket and also life. He would often have a morning rum or two on the way to work and frequently had trouble braking due to tins lodging behind the brake peddle. He has recently gained certification to be a Personal Trainer which truth be told I find to be an insult to the industry. It would be like Missy talking about chest hair, Sunil Sajdeh being a vocalist coach, Julian Stephenson. selling Shampoo, or James Packman or Pic buying someone a beer with is own money.
It just wouldn't happen.
Although saying this, Rocket has handed over the reigns for the fixtures he won't be able to attend to Northern Districts team mate Iain Beverly, so it's not all bad.
I will take this opportunity to congratulate The Beaver on his 6 dismissals on the weekend. Being a former member of the Wicket-Keeping fraternity, or the brotherhood as Greg Matthews would say, I must say it is an exceptional feat to accomplish so many dismissals in one innings. People say it's like a 5 wicket haul or a hundred, but truth be told it's a lot more. 6 in an innings for a keeper may only come once a season, or once in two seasons. It's extremely rare and Bevo should be congratulated on this achievement. Missy has also taken 6, as has Shane Lin, both in 3rd grade. Brett Rosen told me he once took 11 in a first grade innings. I believe him.
It's nice to see any selector at any of the lower grade grounds, especially when 1st grade are doing so well, but 3rd grade have been particularly lucky this season with NSW selector Marshall Rosen showing his face at a number of matches so far this summer. Obviously with NSW looking for a keeper to cement his position in the 'baby blues' Marshall has spent a number of Saturdays keeping (pardon the pun) an eye on young Brett Rosen. Missy continues to score runs in front of the NSW selector, how long can they keep ignoring me?
How could Marshall not notice the poster boy of 3rd Grade - & CK
Finally,I hope everyone enjoys their December 25 this year, may your sacks be filled with joy. Look out for Missy next year, as the sun slowly begins to set on the catalogue of laughs that has been Missy's Mail, which will conclude at seasons end, it's almost a given that I'll get it right in 09.
Missy's Mail 23
So here we are, number 23. A lucky number for some. A number worn on the jersey of legendary sportsmen such as Michael Jordan, LeBron James, Shane Warne, Michael Clarke, Lance Franklin, etc etc. I've got a good feeling about this one. After 22 cracks at this writing lark, I'm bound to get it right sooner or later.
Another "23" worn by a star at L.A. Galaxy
It has only been a matter of days into the cricket season and already I find myself sifting through anecdotes to regale you with. The mind boggles as to what stories I can concoct, or truthfully report after the ritual of moving time forward by one hour.
With every season comes change and in recent summers the GDCC have seen a large turnover of players. Out with the old, in with the new. Fewer and fewer players have played more than a handful of seasons of grade cricket, and captaincy in the lower grades can be of some contention. Who would have thought that on the fateful day of Anthony Sherman arriving at Rawson Oval last year in less than suitable playing condition that he would be entrusted with the responsibility of guiding Gordon's youth to cricket superiority.
It is understood that the circumstances of last years incident was due to a severe case of tea poisoning. He was subsequently in a daze after leaving renowned tea, coffee and biscuit manufacturer T2's head office in the early hours of Saturday morning. A harrowing experience indeed. An experience that not many of the younger players in 4th grade are likely to repeat, after learning the dangers of the real world.
The English Breakfast variety, also sold in capsule or pill form for a stronger hit
However, making sure that the alarm bell is fully functioning is not the only issue confronting the 4th grade skipper on a weekly basis. The weekly ceremony of the coin toss and the shaking of the opponents hand poses more dilemmas for Piccy than for Mahaffey choosing which hair care products not to use. Rumours before the season began were that Pic would agree to do whatever the other captain wanted to do without tossing the coin. Other suggestions included putting the coin on a string or more interestingly a best-of-five game of 'scissor-paper-rock'.
Brett 'I'm forced to talk to lower graders now because I am one' Rosen was kind enough to offer Germs his wicket keeping inner for the event and apparently after round 1, no incident was reported. Surely at some point though, something will happen. Missy will be there.
Another man who's coming to grips with his return to the top flight of Sydney Grade Cricket is Matthew 'how many grade teams do Gordon have**' Michael. After being the proverbial passenger in round 1, The Cake (and all his cake-isms) sent his lovely mother, Maria, to purchase a new set of medium sized creams after discovering that his old pair had tomato sauce stains. Perhaps less time should be spent consuming meat pies, and more time introducing himself to the little people at Chatswood Oval. It is unconfirmed whether The Cake has spoken to James Packman this season, believing that Packers may soon find himself in 2nd grade after it was announced that he had taken a step closer to married life by moving out of home and into a new place with his future wife (who may, or may not be expecting).
It's simply marvellous to see a vibrant Matthew Nicholson around the club at the moment, and despite the fact that Justin Avendano had never heard of him and now refers to he and Beau Casson as 'The one-test wonders', he (as well as Beau) continues to be a most influential figure in the development of all Gordon's players and Sam Bueno. Well, I seemed to have mentioned any first grader that counts so I'll move on to the rest of the rabble. I would reference a Rod Hokin story, however when I spoke to him last, a fly was in my vicinity and muffled Rockets voice quite badly, so I couldn't hear what he was saying. Sorry Rocket.
Congratulations to Cam Eccles who notched his first ton for the club with a chanceless 105 in 3rd grade in round 1. Echo would have gone on to win the game, however Missy, who was at the other end, decided that he was taking too much of the limelight and eventually ran him out. Missy 59 not out. 3rd grade 6 points. Well done Missy. Next.
Eccles shys away from the webmaster's lens after two tons on the trot
Round 2, and Chatswood Oval was the scene for another fine Eccles hundred. It's all about the 2's in this story. His 2nd hundred for the club, his 2nd this year, in 2 weeks in round 2 in 2nd grade When it rains it pours. This feat is even more remarkable when you consider the reserve graders were chasing 144, the second highest scorer being H. Evans with a comparatively meagre 14. Remarkable.
Speaking of remarkable feats, how on earth does Ed Howitt 'II' do it? Playing in 3rd grade with players who were not even born when he began his playing career. However, he keeps churning out wickets and results for the club. Young Chad 'Super' Soper and Jordan 'J-Bomb' Liddle represent a small part of Gordons exciting youth that look to take the north shore club to the higher plateau. I'm telling them to start calling him 'dad', just so he gets used to the idea. Howitt II is also rumoured to be bridging the division between the male and female sectors of the GDCC by tying the knot with a young wicket-keeper in 3rd grade from the fairer sexed club. Missy always knew he held a candle up to him. He first realised when he saw the Missy Higgins shrine in the Howitt's Turramurra abode. This poses as a challenge for Ed Howitt Snr who is already excitedly making arrangements for a backyard wedding - complete with an afternoon of bocce.
Finally I must mention Jordy Holmes who is absolutely killing it overseas at the moment. A legend in recent years at Gordon (although, undoubtedly, half the club won't have heard of him) Jordy moved to the northern hemisphere for greener pastures, colder weather, and easier birds. The big bad fast bowler has not only been amongst the poles in the season gone, but unbelievably also in the runs. Gordy struck a truly impressive 132 from just 92 rocks in the final game of the league season including about 8 or 9 maximums. I remember keeping in a trial game a couple of seasons ago and Jordy came in at number 11, attempting to tee up everything and anything in order for a short afternoon to be achieved. After swinging and missing the first 13 deliveries he turned to me and exclaimed with that beaming smile of his, 'how good is batting?!!'
That some bloke just smoked a more than a run a ball hundred in the UK. Jordy has just 'recently landed a cracking job' which is sponsoring him to remain in the UK. So it would appear that we won't have the legend that is Gordy Holmes for some time yet. Wishing him all the best though from myself and all of his mates at Chatswood Oval (both of them).
The other must be Missy? Perhaps?
A superb start to the 08/09 season saw Gordon capture 4 of 5 grades against last summers Club Champions, Randwick-Petersham and in round 2, Bankstown collected 0 championship points after The Stags had good wins in 2's, 3's and 5's with draws being played out in 1's and 4's. An auspicious opening to this campaign, but to dust off an overly used clich' which wouldn't have dust on it if it was overly used - it's not how you start, it's how you finish.
'If I were to write a poem, and that poem were to come to life, it would look like Dan Mahaffey steaming in at the top of his mark. Ah yes, that truly is poetry in motion.'
**nickname courtesy of B. Rosen
Missy's Mail 22 - Late Edition
When's the next Missy's Mail coming out? When's the next Missy's Mail coming out?? Bloody hell. I never realised how many of you need this. If only your employers knew what you were doing during your 9-5. Disgraceful. So here you go. Here's your fix. Talk about pressure. If this isn't any good, you're going to tell me about it. Tough to please you 'Missy's Mail junkies'.
Harry and Ed Turner - "Boys weekend away!"
Where does one begin? It's been a long winter, 3 months or so. No one is ever sure of the exact length of such a season. Without cricket, the days drift and merge into an unclear paradigm of disillusionment. But with the skies becoming a clearer shade of blue with each passing layer of clothing we can rejoice once more that the sunny season is upon us. Filled with scorching days in the field and cooling refreshments in the sheds. Ah yes, it truly is a joyous time to be living a life.
Unfortunately the GDCC has said farewell to a number of its servants over the past few seasons, and this trend has continued. All have there reasons for moving onwards, but I know for a fact there decisions are not ones that are taken lightly. A good friend of mine, Las Kannangara has departed for greener pastures at Randwick-Petersham. A shame to see him go, however I for one wish him all the best in his endeavours to pursue his higher grade aspirations. He too wishes all his mates back at Gordon a good season ahead.
Former first graders Rasool and Zelma have eloped to Western Suburbs and Eastern Suburbs respectively. Nicholson has achieved the higher rank of NSW selector. Avendano is still at the club. Shame. I'm sure there will be more absentees as round 1 begins, however I am but one man and Fox Sports News doesn't show much Sydney grade cricket. It should. Presenters Luke Elvy (Gordon) and Matthew Thompson (Penrith) are well qualified to do so.
Reece "Bomber" Bombas and his (rumoured) life partner
With winter comes snow. People like snow. It fascinates them. They want to do weird things on it, such as travel over it either with skis or snowboards. Harry Turner is one of these idiots and as you can see his experience will have him thinking twice about being stupid. However, ironically, because he is stupid he will not think twice, nor once. To be fair to Harry this arm breaking incident did not occur at the snow. So embarrassed was he about breaking his Ulna in the annual 'North Shore Arm Wrestling - Sissy Division' competition he travelled to Thredbo to concoct a story and photoshop images of a more masculine injury (see photo at top).
Rumours have been rife as to why Matt Michael was forced to leave the country and travel around the world. Had Michael and Marea had enough an forced The Cake out of his Willoughby abode? Had he become too close with his female neighbour? Apparently Matthews rhinoplasty operation had absolutely no effect on the beak and so, went on an expedition of the world to forget his troubles by finding true love. What is life without love? I hear rumblings of Matty making a return to Chatswood Oval for a more significant stint than last seasons 3 fixtures which saw The Cake score a hundred and bag a few poles in the process. His youngest brother, David, was also spotted in a pre-season training session earlier in August. The club may become just as angry as it once was. The youth should be scared.
Matt Michael getting into some pre-season fitness in the sands of Bolivia
Big bad Josh Ling will also be making a return to the Stags this season once he finishes his university studies. Probably the most likable bloke ever to grace the club, aside from Misdemeanour, Blinger had some time away from the game last season to focus on his charity work in Uganda.
Will Sweeney will not be returning to Gordon this summer after receiving news from his physio (and now best friend) that he will not be able to run for 9 months. His knees are due to give birth. Shweens has been seen at Civic Video investing in such rentals as: 'Shane Watson - They call me the comeback kid', 'Swimming can be fun', DYI - build a better body' and 'Batman'.
Congratulations from MM and all associated with the GDCC to John Cronin who tied the knot in New York City a few weeks ago. Great to see one of the longest hitters ever to grace Killara Oval tee something up other than a part time leggy.
Crowbar looking the part at his wedding - Congrats!
Iqbal Ahmed was there, purely by coincidence however. Iqbal was on a 'tour of information' whatever that means. He says the infidels are in place. I hate it when he speak in his native tongue - Hornsbian.
So the time has come to dust off the willows, warm the backs and the shoulders, clean the creams, duck down to the chemist to get some zinc, and in Medcalf's case, stock up on as many porn site names as possible so you can have something to talk about during the long days outside pavilions. Welcome back to BMac, Juli-hahn, Rocket, Bomber and Wilbur "Jiggysmut" Smith from the land of the pasty whites - we are looking forward to a big season from you all.
With the arrivals and departures that are generally associated with the beginning of the season (and the January transfer period) a whole influx of fresh faces and new talent will be seen at Chatswood Oval as of this weekend. I look forward to meeting you all, forgetting your name and pretending that I'm better than you. It's a great process. Enjoy it.
Missy's Mail No. 21 - Coming of Age
My greatest memory at Gordon does not involve any on-field incident, in which I have had many. It does not resinate from a Tuesday or a Thursday afternoon at Chatswood Oval either. My greatest memory from my 4 years at the Stags begins on one barmy evening at a pub in Killara. The GreenGate Hotel, The GGate, The GG, The Local, call it what you like, has seen many an interesting occasion. Forinstance I can recall Mitchell Kleem creating a dance floor in front of the old bar one time, without the presence of music. It was quite something. He was quickly escorted from the premises.
Andrew Plummer everyone! - And would you believe it, his greatest fan in the background!
However this one particular evening brings a smile to my face every single time I reminisce. It must have been around the 2005/2006 season. The GDCC was remarkably different to the one it is today. The likes of Richie Paul, Dave Parfett, Jimmy Hosking, Dave Storey, Matthew Todd, Richie Brown, Sam Hinton, Jeremy Cashman, John O'Neil-Fuller and most notably Andrew Plummer graced the club with their presence. Those were the days.
There were quite a few patrons at the GG that night, I can not recollect why such a number was there, but it was certainly doing a roaring trade; or as Pic would say 'It was (adjective) heavin''. Most of the Stags had already made their way to the pub, and most were tucking into their medium rare's or microwave schnitzels.
Enter Andrew Plummer.
A large portion of those reading this article will not know who Andrew Plummer is. He will be most disappointed that that is the case. I'm sure Andrew is reading this, as I understand he googles his own name bi-weekly. Sorry Plums, that was harsh. Plummer created his own aura, never one to shy away from telling you the facts (about himself) and was always willing to tell a story, even if it was not funny, nor poignant.
The incident is hazy, mostly because this was at a time when you could light up a smoke and be quick with a joke indoors. Thank-you Billy Joel.
Satan, unbeknown to me at the time was taking a short vacation from Hell. He had taken human form, and seemed to be on some sort of mission to meet, and befriend as many people as possible. Usually from the opposite sex and never one at a time. He had changed his name to John O'Neill-Fuller. Everyone called him JOF and his closest associates (of which there was many) referred to him as 2-pumps. I never understood it, something about his 'bowling action.'
Anyway, 'JOF' had seen young Plummer make his entrance. He jumped up from his seat and announced 'Andrew Plummer everybody' and began to clap. The others at the table that '666' was sitting with also joined in. Soon 15, 20, 30 people were standing and clapping Plummer. Before long it was as if the whole pub were standing and cheering. I remember looking over behind my shoulder and seeing maybe 4 or 5 elderly people clapping along. They didn't even know who Andrew Plummer was. But they liked him. Everyone did.
Plums pretended to be embarrassed. But Andrew Plummer never got embarrassed.
Closely behind that event, running in 2nd place was yet another evening at the GreenGate. 4th grade had won the Grand Final comprehensively. They won it early on the Sunday morning. By the time I rendezvoused with my club mates at around 6ish, they had already been drinking for at least 7 hours. The club song was going off. It was as if the government had banned singing of club songs, so in protest, we sang the club song over and over. Like a broken record. Except the record would play the whole song, and then restart. I remember there was entertainment on that evening. A young man playing his acoustic 6-string, just trying to make a buck. 4th Grade Co-Captain of the premiership winning side, Marty Reynolds, told the musician to stop playing so we could sing the song. Security was involved and eventually, security told the guitarist to stop playing. I think that was also the night I met Andrew Johns and Brett Finch in The Empire in Sydney's Kings Cross. Good times.
That was such a long time ago now, Will Sweeney had only had 6 knee surgeries at that point.
But enough of this trip down memory lane with Missy Higgins, surely there are other more pressing matters in Sydney Grade Crickets off-season! Surely, one would think that Missy would name his good mate Beau Casson before he drifted on about his life at the GreenGate. Touch' noble reader. Touch'.
For those who know Beau Casson, you would not be surprised to read this week that he is on the verge of his first Baggy Green cap. Beau Casson is probably the only person who knows Beau Casson who is surprised. I'll embarrass him now by saying that he is one of the most genuinely good people to grace this earth, and he deserves everything that comes his way. Hard worker, strong character, great with developing players, nice eyes, defined jaw line. He's got it all.
Beau in the early days for WA
He would be the first person to say he is lucky, and to suggest that he will be a test player through circumstance, but anyone who has seen Stuart MacGill bowl recently and watched Beau this year will tell you who is the best Australian spin bowler and international player.
Ironically, I once had a drink with Beau at the GreenGate. In fact, that's not really irony at all. Disregard. For some reason the first graders were talking to me, so I decided to make the most of it. We decided to start sculling beers. Why? I do not know. Only a handful of people can say they have had a beer with an international cricketer. At last count it was a meagre 3 billion. Juli'Hahn-Premium' Stephenson was also there, and so was Craig Simmons. Obviously no one had told 'Simmo' that there was a drought on, because he completely disregarded the water restrictions that night. I think I saw him have 3 waters. Prick.
From everyone at the GDCC, the players, the committee, the fans, the sponsors, we wish Beau all the best and pray for him that his dream comes true in the 3rd test match in the West Indies.
Missy's Mail 20 - The Grand Final Edition
[Editor's Note: Apologies to Missy and faithful readers. This article fell between the cracks during the lead up to the Grand Final]
What a season it's been. At times it has been more on and off than one of Jimmy Hosking's relationships, but here we finally are at seasons end. Well, nearly. At the top of the pile, at the pinnacle of Sydney Grade Cricket two teams remain and will battle it out at Bankstown Oval for 3 days to determine who stands triumphant as the best 1stgrade team of season 2007/2008. Those two teams are St. George and Gordon.
Beverley - To be wrapped in cotton wool
Two proud clubs with more yesterdays than a weekend on the History Channel. The Saints boast a whole heap of notable former players and legends of the game including the likes of Fairfax, Lindwall, Morris, O'Keeffe, and some bloke named Bradman used to go round for the Maroon and Whites, to name a few. They are also privileged enough to play half of their fixtures at Hurstville Oval, one of the most picturesque playing arenas available to grade cricketers, recognizable by its cycling track or velodrome around its circumference. Two seasons ago Brad Rasool attempted to run the track in less than a minute - only to fall agonisingly short, by seconds, much to the amusement of his team mates. Wouldn't have happened in Bradman's day. He used to do it in 38 seconds.
Most impressively, St. George have won the Club Championship a staggering 21 times. It has also won the Poidevin Gray Shield 4 times in the last 5 years. A strong club indeed.
On the other side of the coin is Gordon. A club that faced the threat of extinction not so many years ago when Sydney Grade Cricket looked at a 16 team competition. In 2005/06 The Stags finished 20th. The following season 9thand this season 7th. Missy can recall a season when Gordon's premier side failed to win a single match.
Truly a great story of survival.
Now just 9 sessions of cricket stand between what would be the most of unlikely victories in the top grade. Season 1990/1991 was the last time a Gordon player held aloft the Belvidere Cup, but that was many a blue moon ago. Howitt 'Jnr.' recalls the fixture well as he celebrated his 30thbirthday on the afternoon that Gordon successfully defended their 1989/90 crown.
In round 13 of this summer, Gordon sat in 8thspot, still an outside chance of making the 6, but 9 points adrift of the leaders. An outright victory against Blacktown gave hope and placed them 7thon aggregate heading into round 15. A double bonus point victory over Manly had Gordon jumping 4 places in two weeks into 4thspot.
Ever since that win at Blacktown, the first XI from Gordon have never looked back. Wins against a high quality Sydney Uni side including Test Match stars Clarke and Macgill and then knocking over a Randwick Petersham team that included the best batsman in the country at the moment Simon Katich to book a place in the final.
But Gordon is a team full of high quality first graders, and at the moment they are full of confidence.
Wicket keeper and make-shift opening batsman Iain Beverley will no doubt be wrapped in cotton wool this week as he looks to extend his incredible winning run of never having lost a game of finals cricket. I wouldn't usually recommend touching wood during one of my articles, but in this case I must insist.
Reece Bombas, who has been at Gordon since he was but a mere twinkle in Tony Wilson's eye has seemingly recovered from his earlier attempts to head butt a fist and found form at the right time of the year. This pleases Missy, and that's what first grade are all about. Pleasing Missy. Reece is a player of rare talent at the club. And by that I mean he is under 21 and doesn't bowl leg spin. Truly a remarkable feat.
Despite hours of searching, the webmaster was unable to find a photo of Reece headbutting a fist on his birthday.
Craig Simmons will play his final game for the GDCC on the weekend, and Missy has already put a reminder on his phone to introduce himself to 'The Ship'. There were a handful of occasions when I thought Simmons had waved at him, but in fact he was signalling to a first grader who was standing closely behind me. Shame. Seems like a nice bloke, and takes a good picture. Very photogenic.
Of course it is difficult to look at the two team sheets and disregard the names of Casson, or Nicholson, or Henriques but where the battle may be won, may just be between the lesser known names of the two elevens. Who would have predicted Dylan Connel, who was dropped to 3rdgrade for 'being a bad bloke' reasons, would claim the scalps of Ussie and Kato? (Missy is on a nick name basis with everyone in Grade cricket). You just never know who will turn a game, or who will win the game for their team. Because rest assured someone will. Someone will have their name in lights. It just depends from which XI that name lies.
So many quality players have graced the field for Gordon's premier side this season. Durie, Medcalf, Jones, Archer, Dowsley and Garrett are all names that come to mind, but there can be no doubt without the assistance of Higgins, Gordon would not have the chance to reacquaint themselves with Belvidere. For 30 minutes one sunny Sunday afternoon at Chatswood oval Missy graced the field as a substitute fields person. The story is widely told, thanks to some loud mouthing by Howitt and The Peoples Champion, Ahmed.
B. Casson to G. Mail. Usual short rubbish from Casson, Mail cuts behind point to M. Higgins. No run.
B. Cason to G. Mail. Usual short rubbish from Casson, Mail cuts behind point, straight to M. Higgins. No run. Sorry, cancel that. 4 runs.
An interesting twist in the story comes from further inspection of the rules and regulations of Sydney Grade Cricket. Had Missy fielded the ball successfully and not conceded 4 runs Gordon would not have made the finals. It's far too difficult to explain, however you would also be right in saying that Missy is the reason that Beau Casson finds himself on a plane to the West Indies. You're welcome Buzz.
Rumour has it that Brad Rasool will also find himself on a plane to the Windies. However this is for completely different reasons.
Whilst on the topic of rumours, it is understood that Elliot Richtor is to be having some sort of Pre-Grand Final do, or 'shindig' as it is called on his MySpace website. Hopefully this function causes far less media attention than his last orgy, which found Elliot all over the news and forced him to sport a pair of Sunglasses he discovered in his 'High School Musical' showbag from the 2006/7 Royal Easter Show for an unnaturally lengthy period.
Elliot will not be hosting the function on Sunday at The Greengate Hotel. That's why it's not listed under 'MySpace parties of the Week'. However I strongly urge all to attend. This weekend will be a great one for the club and I sincerely wish both teams the best of luck and hope they produce some truly wonderful cricket.
Missy 'insert witty and or comical nickname here' Higgins
Missy's Mail 19
Disclaimer: the views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and are not to be associated with the Gordon District Cricket Club Inc. The GDCC expressly disclaims and refuses any responsibility or liability for the content, style or form of any comments made to this article, which remain solely the responsibility of the author)
What an ugly and ridiculous saga world cricket currently finds itself entwined. The Indian Cricket team and its officials amaze me. I of course refer to the falling out of what was the remarkable 2nd Border-Gavaskar Trophy Test Match at the SCG, the first of 2008. One of the best matches Test cricket, particularly in Australia, has produced in many summers.
More of the same would see ticket sales match that of last year's disappointing and disastrous Ashes series. However this match will not be remembered for Symonds second Test hundred, nor Hayden's 28th, nor Tendulkar's 38th. Heck, I bet even Michael Clarke's 3 wickets in 5 balls will be skipped when people discuss this match. This match will be retold for all the wrong reasons, and given the state of the game itself, in between Australia's strangle hold on world cricket and dwindling Test Match ticket sales, I'm not sure if any publicity is good publicity. But hey, if Britney Spears still has a career, perhaps my opinion is off base.
In what appeared to be a set-up and carefully rehearsed post match press conference Indian captain, Anil Kumble, said dejectedly - to appreciative applause from the Indian media, 'Only one team out there was playing in the spirit of the game. That's all I can say'.
Well hold the phone there Anil! It obviously slipped the champion leg spinners mind that his star off-spinner and renowned competitor, Harbhajan Singh, had been reported for racial abuse and hours later would be found guilty and suspended for 3 matches. Not to mention, Yuvraj Singh had also been found charged for dissent in the 1st Test match just a few days prior.
Racism in any sport is a disgusting thing. It is petty and weak. Cricket is as much a mind game at the top level as it is a skilled game. Australian players have been found guilty in the past, and quite frankly not enough has been done to prevent it from happening further, no matter how innocent or accidental. Nobody should ever be vilified on the cricket field for race, religion or creed. Andrew Symonds has played it down remarkably well considering what happened in India in October, all things considered.
So what exactly constitutes 'The spirit of the game'? To me 'spirit of the game' is a complete throw away term nowadays. Especially in international cricket where livelihoods, careers and futures are based on a few moments. You can expect it in grade cricket or perhaps even at state level, but international cricket is as much a business as it is a game.
Kumble went on to say that 'a draw would have been a fair result'. This may be true, as both teams were closely matched throughout the 5 days and it was difficult to pick a winner in any session, but not a single player or spectator alike would have wanted that game to end in a draw. It deserved better than that, and it got what it deserved. A grandstand finish. Whether Australia or India won that game, cricket needed a result and the Gods provided.
It cannot be denied that the Indians received many dubious and poor decisions in the match, however this is of their own doing. They have finally fallen on their own sword. We've all seen the teams, particularly teams from the sub-continent over appeal and carry on like school girls at a movie premier. The screaming, the shouting, the over appealing. It at times resembles 11 decapitated chickens in a cage. Umpires are aware of it, and know to look for it.
Steve Bucknor has been around long enough to witness it first hand on every continent and while Mark Benson has only 20 or so games under his belt, he would be well aware of the tactics the Indians have used in the past.
So we return to the post match press conference where Ricky Ponting, a proud and noticeably glowing captain sits and waits for questions to be asked by the press. The Indian media are waiting for Ponting to make a mistake, they're sweating on him to have a go at the Indians. He refrains, praising both teams for the competitive nature of the fixture highlighted by superb individual performances. The Indian press have had enough, and draw Ricky out by all but labeling him a cheat. A member of the press quizzes the Australian captain about a catch he claimed and whether he thought he grounded the ball, then appealed. Ponting is clearly surprised by the question and says 'There is no way I grounded that ball, and if you're actually questioning my integrity in the game, you shouldn't be standing here'.
It's a completely ridiculous question for anyone who has seen the footage. However, the rehearsed press conference has worked' sort of. It looks like Ricky has blown up at the media, and The Indian press are now banned from asking the Australian players questions. Objective achieved. You can imagine the headlines on the Mumbai Times.
I've long been an admirer of the way cricket is regarded in India. If the rest of the Test playing nations supported the game like it is there, cricket would be in a far better state. However, with the good comes the bad, and all I see from the fallout of this Test is burning effigies on the streets of Calcutta. This is the bad. I don't think Mr. Bucknor will be making a trip there any time soon. Nor Mr. Benson. Even Cricket Australia Chief Executive, James Sutherland got a run.
The worst of the worst from it all is the childish nature of the Indian Cricket Board who have threatened to suspend the tour of Australia pending Singh's appeal. Why? Surely the ICC can't turn around the decision to suspend Singh for 3 matches. This would be condoning racism in the game. So is the ICC green lighting racism in the game? It was poor enough that they did nothing about the racist chants from Indian supporters directed towards Andrew Symonds in October, claiming 'nothing happened' - by far the worst attempted cover up of all time. Lazy and pathetic are better words to describe the attitude taken. I bet even the Indian players are red faced.
A simple message for Indian cricket officials on behalf of world cricket. Sharpen up your act, international cricket looks up to you, but most of all needs you.
Missy's Mail 18
I haven't seen such in climate weather since the early 90's. Of course, this 'in climate' weather I refer to is that of the fires of '93. Quite the opposite we have seen over the first 3 months of the fairer season, with precipitation falling more freely than a lager on a hot day. Clearly I have enough time to twiddle my thumbs, and there are only so many emails I can read from Tiddles, so another Mail is in order.
Archer gets a gig in 1st Grade
The biggest event on the Gordon calendar has been and gone, that of the Annual Stags Luncheon. It can be best described as a success for most, although Iain Beverley could hardly agree with that sentiment after being caught behind trying to put one through the covers. At least he had a crack, good to see Bevo involving himself in the club, this kind of thing would never happen at Waitara Oval.
The likes of Sherman, Turner, and reportedly The Moth had far better success rates as attempts to bring the female and male sectors of the club closer together went as smoothly as James Packman's legs. It is understood that Sherman (Chief Liasing Officer, CLO for short) had a private meeting in the back seat of a cab on the way to "Lovers Lane", aka "Pic's" house. Furthermore, CLO is said to have turned straight a supposedly backward square delivery. This scoop is yet to be confirmed or denied. Dylan is on the case - who else.
Charlie 'Duck' Turner, may only be of young age however is quickly taking over the reigns that Pic will one day vacate. Without a doubt he has the potential of complete looseness that Van Schalkwyk demonstrated early in his briefly haltered career.
As I print the word looseness, wondering whether in fact it is or isn't a word - and how many points I would score using it in the upcoming Scrabble World Championships, another two words rush to the forefront of my mind and come to a screeching halt like burning rubber before an imminent catastrophic car crash.
The man himself - the face of the future - Mike Weaver
Weaver was given control of the empire that is the Gordon Stags Colts earlier this season whilst Millar was occupied changing everyone's website articles, and Trevor Watling didn't return the clubs phone calls.
Weaver set about an email/mission statement that would change the way cricket was played in the Metropolitan Cup. Apart from changing the name of the team to the 'Colts Cosmos' (a reflection of taking the game into the space age) I didn't really know what Weaves was on about. Millar, the man who built the dynasty of 6th grade with an unprecedented record of 6,891 matches without a loss - 5,345 of those coming via TKO, may have something to say about this change of attitude, though he may not get the chance with so many articles to re-write and photos to edit - when is the next Fantasy League result due out??
Movember, the itchiest and (ask any woman) most unattractive of months has drawn to a close. Many of those involved entertained the idea of heading into Movember, however this was obviously too itchy a consideration as upper lips were stripped naked at 12:01am on the first day of the Christmas month. That is of course with the exception of Michael Falk who resembled the club coach at Gordon a couple of years ago with his new 'Mo' and has retained some growth below the nostrils.
There were some notable entries this Movember; Sajdeh couldn't have looked more like someone out of Dylans kit with his growth and swagger. Kenner should have stuck with shaving his forearms, Creed was patchy, Archer looked like he could have had the number 9 on his back for the Newtown Jets in the mid 70's, and Howitt was forced to change his patented chin scratch to a 3 fingered groom around the front Orpheus.
Congratulations to those boys who entered for a fantastic cause and I sincerely wish some good money was raised. Millar assues the author that there will be more photos posted in the upcoming days and that you can still sponsor the boys throughout December.
Sunil Sajdeh - an early contender for the Mo award
Whilst on congratulations and praise, a huge pat on the back must surely go to Chris Archer who was named to debut in the 1st grade side to play against Parramatta this round. Unfortunately, rival and all-round bad guy, Beau Casson had done a rain dance for the 5 days leading up to the match, and subsequently it poured all Saturday and no play was achieved. To rub salt in the wound, Casson paid the Parramatta second grade captain to bat in week one so that Arch would be forced to sit in the sheds the following week as well.
Condolences to Archie, but I'm sure it won't be long before he is reselected in the top grade.
From one bowler to another. An interesting achievement that has received little to no media attention is Ed Howitt's 400th grade cricket dismissal. Currently sitting on 399 as of October 20 (Round 4 vs Northern Districts) Howitt requires one more to join an illustrious group. He must surely get there next time he bowls, however with the rain playing such a major factor in matches of late, that may take till Christmas. But what a present that would be.
It would be appreciated by many if someone could get a hold of Casson to inform him to cease his rain dancing so that we could actually get a game.
Missy's Mail 17
Matt Michael is a hoax. Gets picked in 4th grade, 12 months after he was last in 1st grade, tells the selectors he doesn't want to play under Hashim Amla so he limps into 3's where in his first dig, he hands gully a dolly for 7. He then retains his place in 3's for the round against the bumble bees because 93% of the club is doing the HSC and he goes on to nick and nudge 100 not out, 94 of those runs behind square. The other 6 came from the bomb over mid wicket that took him from 94 to 100.
For those of you in 3s who weren't introduced: Matt Michael
It is understood Howitt tried on several occasions to bring the innings to a declared close whilst the Cake was in the 90's. The Cake turned a blind eye and took a further hour and ten minutes to bring up triple figures. He then has the audacity to burgle 2-2 before the close of play. That is something his youngest brother Dave would never do. Good bloke Dave, not so much Matt.
With consecutive Saturdays now been washed out for the boys from Chatswood it will almost certainly not rain again for at least two and a half years. This is particularly bad news for those who plan to attend the Stags Lunch. I believe it is 4th grade who haven't played the day after the luncheon in about 4 or 5 years, this trend is set to be broken come Saturday, and ironically, what makes it worse is that due to the changing of fixture from two-dayer to one-dayer the alarm clock will have to be set around 4 hours earlier than planned. Compounding matters, 2's and 4's will make one of the longest journeys for a Gordon player to Raby 1 and 2 at Camden. The shared dressing room at Raby will at least offer some of the players the opportunity to divulge their experiences from the night before.
The Luncheon will be an exciting one this season as their will be around 30 debutants from the players, and I'm sure many more from the supporters section. Maybe the Cake will introduce himself to some lower graders, wouldn't count on it though as I hear he hadn't fully met most of his 3rd grade team mates. I'm more looking forward to the question Wilfred Owen, sorry'.Mitch, is going to ask Phil Waugh. Hopefully in the form of the A-B A-B rhyming scheme.
Here he is Mitch, get those questions ready: Phil Waugh
Anyway, it has been a very busy time overseas for the Stags, with big news coming from Rosen and Eddington.
Bretty has continued his Tour de' Love through Africa crossing the boarders of Namibia, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique. His stories are truly captivating. Sand dunes in Namibia, civil unrest, public starvation, and $2.20 diesel in Zimbabwe, sleeping in tents in trees whilst Hippo's and Elephants walk freely below in Zambia, and an African funeral in Malawi. The big news from Bretty is that he is now moving to France for 18 months after a short while longer in Africa.
His cousin has organised an IT job for him there. 3 days a week travelling through Europe on work visits, and the rest of the time working from home, which I believe is 30 minutes from a ski field. So Nudie Rosen's Tour de' Love - African edition, is coming to a close. But when love closes one door it opens another, and soon the Tour de' Love - Eurotrip, will commence.
Speaking of love and Europe, Anthony Eddington's lovely wife Nina is now with child. Who would have thought, all those years ago, that the Twan would soon be a father. Stuart Brand and his wife Danielle are also expecting. Brandy was wed a matter of weeks ago in Brisbane with family and friends.
It seems when people leave the club their real life begins. Not many people have been wed or had children whilst on the playing roster at the club, (except for two-pumps who was married anywhere between 4 and 9 times during his days at Gordon. Records where lost after he lost them in a poker game) maybe that's one for Sam Beuno.
Speaking of JOF (John O'Neill-Fuller, for those of you who never met the devil) he will be arriving back in Sydney in time for Christmas after what must be 5 or 6 months in Abu Dhabi. As will Cronin (John Cronin, for those who have never had alcohol poisoning). An interesting summer lies ahead, which brings me back to Australia.
Isn't it quite simply marvellous to have the cricket back! The best thing about an Australian summer is driving with the windows down, air-con on full blast and listening to the Aussies demolish the rest of the world on Grandstand Radio. Jim Maxwell, Peter Roebuck and the booming laugh of Kerry O'Keefe. Descriptive, insightful, and forever humorous the boys behind the mic on ABC 702 keep me coming back. Here's an example of some quality radio' http://www.abc.net.au/reslib/200603/r74772_210339.mp3
The man behind the laugh, Kerry O'Keefe
See you all at the Stags Lunch and good luck for the round against the Ghosts.
Missy's Mail 16
It seems appropriate for Missy's Mails' Sweet Sixteen that his favourite player, Ian Higgins, was able to achieve such success on the weekend, If it wasn't for Beau Casson's 120 in first grade and Harry Turner's 133* in 4's, perhaps he would be indulging in more of the limelight. But no one player is bigger than the club, with the exception of Ahmed who has packed on a few kg's over the winter, and has now actually become larger than the club.
It was touch and go, but we found a photo of Casson, 'cos he's in 1st Grade.
A mixed start for Gordon against strong opposition, namely Penrith and Fairfield-Liverpool, sees the Stags sitting in 9th place in the club championships. Of course with so many grade debutants at Gordon this season, this ladder position won't mean much, and with it only being round 2 it shouldn't mean much to anyone. Forget I said anything.
Apart from the afore mentioned achievements, a number of other players have caught the attention of the greater media. Dan Mahaffey's first 3rd grade game resulted in him returning 4/42 to help 3rd grade capture a bonus point against the Cats. Ed Zelma's 4/32 at Howell Oval saw 1st grade get the chocolates in round 1. However, these figures pale in comparison to Charlie Turner's 6/68 against Fairfield in 5th grade. Charlie, or Duck, claimed the first 6 wickets to have the Lions reeling, before a rearguard action took place and Fairfield were able to secure the 6 points, 8 wickets down.
It would be remiss of me not to mention Ed Howitt Jnr's 4/51 and 3/15 in the opening two games of the season. The major story, however, does not lie in Hoppa's figures. Rather, the biggest news to come out of Chatswood since Howitt's first season (1974) is that he is turning the ball! As in, he is spinning it!! Quite unbelievable. One could imagine my surprise behind the stumps as I witness first hand maybe 40-50 deliveries spinning, perhaps even half of them beating the bat. Remarkable. Howitt leads the wicket takers with 7 at an average of 9.43.
Of all the new players at the club, one in particular has grabbed the most attention. Young Justin Avendano is best described as a confident kid. He disregards status and judges a man for who he is, not what he does. Truly honourable. Here are two examples of 'Avendano-ness'.
A possibly older looking Avendano
Whilst bowling - where else would a 14 year old bowl but in the first net - his ball trickled underneath the net and rested 10 metres away from where he followed through. Craig Simmons, discussing all things Touareg with Tiddles (or if not Tids, a 1st grader) was a mere 6 metres away from Avendano's ball. Avendano hailed 'Hey mate! Chuck us the ball!' A clearly bemused Simmons had no option but to do as instructed and retrieve the GreenShielders ball.
Matthew Nicholson came down to Chatswood and helped out in the nets whilst bowing some gentle off-spinners. Avendano found himself in the same net as Nicholson and when Nicho beat the bat with a sharp turning, drifting, dipping, bouncing 'offy' Avendano questioned 'Gee, that was well bowled! What grade do you play in'? Nicho didn't reply, as I don't think he has been asked that question since the early 90's, about the same time as young Justin's birth. It's not often that one player can get the same facial expression from two state players. It's not often that a lower grader gets to say anything to a first grader for that matter! I can't wait for Avendano to sweep Beau Casson and then cry out 'Try bowling right handed, champ!'
The beauty of youth.
Gordon's favourite little bugger Brett Rosen continues his travels through Africa. He is now exploring southern Africa and more specifically Namibia and Botswana. Rumours are flying around about Bretty's future and another possible cricketing stint in the UK. Obviously the talent in Africa is not as strong that what Nudie thought and is forced to go through Europe to look for love. From now on I'm labelling Bretty's travels the 'Tour de Love'.
Brett getting some love from the locals
Speaking of love there would be no happier father in Australia right now than Ian Packman. With both sons set to tie the knot, he is in for a proud time in his fatherhood. Neither James, nor Tim have been seen out of late due to them both saving for engagement rings. Rumours a fierce that Tiddles will be hosting a double ceremony in his Woolstencraft apartment for the brothers, but these whisperings have yet to be confirmed by anyone remotely reliable.
Injury has hit Chatswood like horse flu has hit the racing industry. I would list the names of the injured however I prefer to keep this under 4,000 words. I must urge, particularly to the fast bowlers, to take special care in the warm-ups. The club does not need more injuries this weekend.
Speaking of this weekend, there isn't a game that boils the blood more than round 3 this season. Gordon vs North Sydney. The Stags against the Bears. It's much more than a battle for 6 points, more so is it a battle for North Shore supremacy. A huge weekend for all grades this weekend, the club wants 5 good wins, let's get it done.
Missy's Mail 15
So where has Missy been? Who cares? Fair point, and I respect your argument. The real question should perhaps be 'Where the hell is the rest of the club?' I have attended all the pre-season fixtures thus far and safely say I recognize a total of 6 players from last year. 62.3% of this year's registered players will debut for the club in round 1, a mind boggling statistic, even if I did make it up. I would have revealed Missy's Mail XV a lot sooner had I known that players like Adam Gilchrist, Jon Moss, John Davidson, and Jim Cattlin (all holding the same cricketing ability) had already left the club. Therefore I have had no news to report.
Brett Rosen scoring runs on a beach where I'd love to be
Anyone hoping to read about the players from overseas can stop reading here. I've given up all hope in trying to communicate with them. I presume the internet has ceased operating in the northern hemisphere.
With September 22 inching closer, almost daily now, cricket die hards across Australia will be dusting off their cricket kits, bleaching their creams and starching their Greg Chappell wide brims. One of the wettest winters on record during the biggest drought we, the human race, have ever seen can only mean one of two things. One, that Al Gore was wrong, or two, that it will be a scorching hot summer.
An exciting season looms at the Stags with so many youngsters and academy members attempting to better the impressive 6th place in last years Club Championship race. Unfortunately for the 14 to 19 year olds at the club, they won't have Gordon's favourite school teacher John O'Neil-Fuller educating them on the finer points of life as JOF has moved overseas for 'work'. That's what I always loved about Two-Pumps. Firstly, that anyone believed his nickname came about from his bowling action, and secondly, how close he got to his students. A real mentor. We all hope this mail finds you in good health Joffa!
Bretty Rosen, another fallen Stag from the 06/07 season, continues his travels around the world and currently finds himself in Africa. He's doing all the usual 'touristy' things - go on safari, see the sights, meeting the people, having a child with a local. You know, the usual stuff. Perhaps he will be unfortunate enough to meet up with Matt Michael who also intends to travel this summer, although with a mouth watering round 15 fixture vs Manly, The Cake may find himself staying in Sydney to watch his best mate Damon Livermore play against his old club in what will be the biggest 4th Grade grudge match the year has to offer. I hear through the Missy-Vine that neither Michael will be playing at the Stags this year, with Dave focusing on other commitments. What a prospect this is! With such less anger at the club maybe there are but good times ahead. Happy, laughing times. At the very least Mitch won't cop it from as many angles. God bless him.
I haven't heard from Anthony Sherman in some months but some guy who now plays lower grades at Manly told me that Pic once again hit the RSVP top 10 in early August. I would pay a lot of money to be a fly on the wall during a date with the Sherminator. Money which I don't have now, but I could probably borrow some from a few guys and then pay them back later.
Good, Better, BIC
Without a doubt the biggest news from the off-season comes from who else, but the Best In Club. BIC. My mate BIC. You can imagine my surprise as I was flipping through my Telegraph whilst enjoying some corn flakes - or whatever it is I eat for breakfast, when I saw my best mate starring back at me promoting his beloved Woolworths. Who would've thunk it? BIC Evans, the new face of Woolworths. Thinking of it now, only about 4 players playing at the club now will know who Rob Evans is, so maybe my friends at UTS Balmain (or the Sydney Cricket Club as they are now known) can appreciate this anecdote.
The issue of the draw this season (Ed. click here to view the draw), as always, will have grade cricketers scurrying through the rounds to see who against, where and when they will spend their weekends. Gordon won't have to worry about trips to Bankstown, Hawkesbury, Sutherland and Sydney Uni for the next 6 months, however it would appear that grades 1, 3 and 5 will be clocking up the miles with away bouts. This comes as a relief to 2nd and 4th graders who, in the 06/07 summer, travelled to Cape Town and back, or at least the equivalent.
I ,for one, am excited about the non-inclusion of the Hawks this year. For the past 3 years I've travelled out to Bensons Lane to battle what can only be described legendary flies. I challenge any grade cricketer to think of anything else at first thought when one says Hawkesbury. But I suppose it is all part of the experience.
Congratulations to Dylan Connell who will lead Gordon this year as Club Captain. A marvellous choice from the committee and I predict good things from Dyldo in the upcoming months. Missy has once again been overlooked (not nearly as big an oversight as Choppy - imagine the rums we would've had) but has been appointed as club vice-captain for consecutive seasons. Missy now holds the longest reign of any other club vice captain before him - which was Ian Higgins way back in 2006/2007. I'm beginning to feel like Andy Bichel.
Of course, this isn't the only change to the hierarchy at Gordon. AJ Falk takes over from Ian Carroll as President, Paul Stephenson is promoted from selector to Vice-President, and most notably Matthew Kelly has graduated from player to honorary assistant to the secretary. When I questioned Kells as to his role, with no intention of mocking him, he threw a cricket ball to my groin. Touch' Matthew. Touch'.
There is only one true Colonel
Whilst dining at one of the many fine Thai restaurants in Hornsby I ran into former good bloke (and Stag) Leon Gulaptis. Many will remember Gulappa fondly for his perfect bone structure, chiselled jaw line, 10 point smile and high pitched squeal. Gulappa has found himself in the centre of more KFC ads, this time playing a man role rather than in the background as previous. He joked that people will start calling him The Colonel, what with all of his fried chicken appearances. Optimistic at best. He's also scored a gig in one of the upcoming government commercials, so watch out for that. I am looking forward to it greatly.
Good luck to all at pre-season, and remember:
'If you play in a lower grade than me, I'm not going to talk to you' Matt Michael (2006)
Missy's Mail 14
Wimbledon. For the first time in the history of professional tennis, women will receive equal prize money as their male counterparts. Forgive me for firing up an age old argument, however I am strongly of the opinion that this should not be the case. It's not so much that the matches are so much shorter, skill level is lower or total enjoyment is lacking, for me it's more to do with the fact that no one outside the top 5 seeded players holds aloft the coveted prize at the end of the championships in the women's game.
(Missy makes 21. Highest score this year)
Anyone who thinks that Serbian Ana Ivanovic (ranked 6th) can win Wimbledon is an idiot. Venus Williams coming back from a lengthy lay off from tennis was the lowest ranked player ever to win the tournament, when in 2005 she was ranked 14th.
Conversely, need I remind any Australian about the 2001 Championships when Goran Ivanisevic defeated our Patty Rafter after receiving a wildcard entry into the tournament. That's what sport should hold for me. Theatre, drama, a compelling storyline, rich narrative. I like to think that Ivanisevic was struggling for cash in 2001. Rent was due, he had parking fines hanging over is head, child services was knocking at the door and the prize money he took home saved his life. I don't like the idea of daddy's little girl taking home over a million dollars US to spend on the development of her own country club and grooming of ponies. You can't make a movie out of that.
Saying this, I haven't watched a women's tennis match since the delightful, and talented, Anna Kournakova graced the court. So perhaps my point of view is irrelevant.
With so much news to report on it's difficult to separate the good from the bad and the completely useless from the completely unprintable. The good news is that the northern summer has begun and our globetrotting Stags are well into their European cricketing experience.
(Adam Cubbage out of action)
Adam Cubbage, enjoying his first venture away from the comforting eyes of a loving mother has had mixed success with both bat and ball. More importantly he tells me his success rate with 'the ladies' boasts a much better strike rate. I'd elaborate, however I can't bear the thought of Cubbage shirtless.
After a good start to the season Cubbage Wilson has struggled to go on with his scores. Thus far he has struck 351 runs at 51 with the willow and taken
17 poles at 18 after 9 starts.
The last time I spoke to James Packman he told me it was flooding in York.
Subsequently I doubt if he has put many runs on the board. However, that's not where it ends for Wes. One of the rewards of having an internet article is that you seem to have eyes and ears everywhere. Whilst in Europe Jamma was due to spend time with the lovely Kelly in Pisa for her birthday.
(James Packman after betting at Stanstead)
Unfortunately he missed his flight. My source saw Packers sitting in Stanstead airport during a 6 hour wait for his plane having a bit of a flutter in a betting shop. I have it under good authority that Where's Packman has stayed in top physical condition over the winter months.
Hopefully some photos come out of the woodwork and we can see Packers in peak physical condition.
Jules Stephenson has had more success with the bat than the ball in his northern summer, playing in Norwich. 420 league runs and 14 wickets will have Julie-Hahn sending his resume' for opening batsman duties in higher grades this year.
A couple of weeks ago Stepho caught up with B-Mac and the two had planned a
2 day trip to Dublin. Jules drove from Norwich to Reading, approximately a 3 hour endeavour to meet up with Macca before catching a 6am flight from Stanstead airport (no doubt having a chat to Packers, who was still punting) to Dublin.
(Jules and Bmac on their way to Brighton, who forget his passport?)
The well planned excursion came falling to pieces after Midnight remembered he had left is passport back at Norwich. Quick thinking and still a burning desire to push on with the getaway for two found them spending their 2 days in Brighton. Unbeknown to the two Sydney boys, Brighton is the gay capital of England.
On a completely unrelated topic, the only thing I've heard from B-Mac thus far is that he saw Anne-Louise in Denmark a few weeks prior to the commencement of the cricket season. That's all I'm allowed to say. For more information, you can check page 3 of The Sun newspaper. B-Mac and Midnight are to attend the running of the bulls in Spain in a few weeks. Hopefully a non-homosexual story will come out of that.
Ed Howitt Jnr and Jordan Holmes provide me with the most entertainment for this instalment of Missy's Mail. It pains me to provide my faithful readers with the statistics of Howitt's summer.
420 League runs at 84
3 half hundreds and 1 ton
Wrench percentage: 93.6% (apparently it doesn't count if the wrench gets a leading edge)
151* in a 14 over match
(Hoppa in England)
15 League wickets at 23
Best of 5/15
Off-Breaks 0.8% (this may be generous)
Jordy Holmes, playing down the road from the irrepressible Howitt, has also found some rhythm in the UK. Firstly, I must publicize Holmes is in fact working in a fitness centre - as a fitness instructor. Far be it for Higgins to be critical of the lifestyle, physique, and or etiquette failures of Gordy, however I, amongst others, found this to be a source a great amusement.
The last time I spoke to Jordy he had only played in 3 League matches, he was already averaging 48 with the bat and picking up plenty of poles - including a best of 3-14 off 13 consecutive overs.
Much more interestingly Holmes claims the real story is not how many runs Hoppa is scoring, it's how many he's going for. At Hoppa's club, Jordy continues, there is a 50p fine for pavilion damage off your bowling and word on he street is that Jr. is coughing over 2 pound 50 a game. Holmes continues with his allegations saying that Howitt had bowled 32 overs with figures of 1 for 145.
The story takes a interesting and spiteful turn when in the local derby Holmes and Howitt Jr. were to collide head to head in a 20/20 fixture.
(In case you didn't know Jordan is the one on the left)
Howitt to narrate:
Lets just say in a 20/20 over game he came on and bowled to me. 1st ball nicked past keeper 4, 2nd ball middle stump knocked back trying to hoick to cow corner...oh, sorry jordy...NO BALL ( means next ball free hit). 3rd ball 6, hook over mid wicket, last ball 4 over point.
When I questioned Jordy about the matter he replied; 'No comment'.
As for Missy, he/she has 'attained majority' as Kelly put it so elegantly in a text message. Turning 21 is a major milestone in the life of any young Stag. I got a phone call from Tiddles on the day and he waffled on for a good 23 minutes about how everyone told him he would never see 21. Now he sees 21 year old all the time'touch' Tids. Touch'.
Will Sweeney made a speech at the 21st 'kegger' recapping every regret I have ever had over the past 21 years. Photo evidence of the early morning can not be provided; the courts are yet to release Richie Kenner for his part in the violation of the neighbourhood.
Many of you will be surprised to learn that Missy is so young, all I can say is that I'm 2 years older than when I started.
All fan mail can be directed through http://www.fitness-4life.com.au/ now there's a free plug if ever I've seen one.Missy
Missy's Mail 13
There is so much interesting material out there on the internet. I'm not sure one would describe it as light reading, however it's comical value can not be denied and it comes from all around the globe. Whether it be in Germany, where students can now study the fine art of kebab making and receive a diploma, sex in the bathrooms of the Clovelly Hotel in Australia, or the condom found in a New Zealand 'Happy Meal'.
Parfett and Richie Paul with Missy
My personal favourite comes from Japan where 'fake poodles' have been sold. Obviously it has become quite widespread as it has been international news. The real kicker here though is that the animal being sold as a fake poodle is a sheep. That's right, it's not a typo. Sheep. A 'Bollywood' film star of Japanese heritage was also involved in the chaos, and on a late night talk show questioned why her new dog didn't bark, instead it went baaaaaa.
With so much ridiculous news out there, it's hard for an idiot like myself to keep up with the competition, but what the hell. Here we go again.
I'll start with the rather eventful departure of talk show host to his own life, Neil Longhurst. I was fortunate enough to have the pleasure to drive Longers to the airport on Tuesday, the day before Two-Up Day, or ANZAC Day as it's known to RSL members. Traffic was horrendous, a quite literal quagmire consumed the roads. Sure we were driving in peak hour, but still who's driving to the city 4:45pm? Apparently everyone was, to answer my own rhetorical question. Fortunately I had out smarted, out witted and out played the RTA and allowed for such a lengthy traffic delay. What I had not allowed for was my engine overheating. The ever reliable Toyota Corolla, circa 1912, which had never given me a problem decided to play a nasty trick on Longers and break down, without a hope of the engine restarting. I'm not sure if there is ever a good place to break down, maybe inside a petrol station, or outside an NRMA office, however the right hand lane of the Eastern Distributor does not come under the column of 'good places to break down'.
And let me tell you, the motorists were angry that day my friend. There was about 100,000 cars behind me - added by the teaming rain outside - and it would be lie if I said I didn't appreciate the constant honking of horns to acknowledge my bad timing. It wouldn't surprise me if someone who is reading this saw me - cheers for the help. Bastards. The engine was completely dead. The NRMA was informed, and a tow truck was organised.
Longhurst, Missy... Priceless
The real problem was that Longy had to be at the airport in about 30 minutes, there was no chance we were going anywhere and I think it's fair to say he would have been the first person ever to get a cab from inside the ED. He rang the airport and agreed that if he never came back to the country he would be given an extra hour and half to his arrival time. Longers was relatively calm for someone who was about to miss his plane home, but understandably edgy. I was far more relaxed and questioned whether we were on the radio in every traffic report in Sydney. I'm not sure my jovialness was appreciated.
The Tow Truck driver came, and it was probably one of the most embarrassing moments of my life, to get out of my broken down automobile to face the swarms of fuming road users. Luckily I had decided to wear pants that day. In the truck, Longers was making new best mates with the driver whilst I was more pensive over the state of my car. The car was quickly fixed by an overly friendly tow-truck driver and we were soon back on the roads and at the airport to see Longy off for the last time. On behalf of the GDCC, I'd like to thank Longers for coming out here to play for our club. The club won't quite be the same without him around, definitely quieter though.
All the best Longers, hopefully you can come back out here soon and we wish you all the best until then mate.
As for the next day, Two-Up day, I ran into a couple of former Stags in the shape of Dave Parfett and Richie Paul at 'The Dolphin' in Surrey Hills. Dickie in fine form as per usual and Parf well on his way to a solid evening. Both Dave and Richie left the club 2 seasons ago to focus on their work commitments. Parf is still going round for the Beecroft footy club and will match up against 1st grade opening bowler and Lindfield Rugby stalwart Dylan Connell in a few rounds time. Richie is heading to England in August for a 2 year working stint.
Sam Hinton has been in the wars, regular readers will remember he had some shoulder problems late last season due to a lengthy stint of One Tree Hill on the couch. This time Hint-Dog's injuries are far more serious. He has some elbow ligament damage and was looking at one stage at needing a full reconstruction. The good news is that won't need to happen, however he will require a large amount of rehab during the winter months. It's important that I do not exaggerate injuries, last year I had Las out of action for the early part of the cricket season. Turned out he was fine, and because of my report he was almost not selected in Round 1. Sorry Lassie mate.
Speaking of Sri Lankans, it would be remiss of me if I did not mention the farce that was the entire 2007 Cricket World Cup, which I'm almost positive started some time around mid-July last year. The tournament could not have gone worse for administrators. The final and the complete debacle which it was, was without a doubt a fitting end to a terribly run, organised and supported event. I'm sure everyone in the world was cheering on Australia though, I don't think they're sick of us winning everything yet. I presume Sri Lankan captain Mahayla Jayawardene's waxer couldn't make the trip to the Caribbean as he is currently sporting the proudest mono-brow in international sport. Enough of opposition captains, Ricky Ponting's no oil painting either is he.
Missy has again fallen for the fairer sex
One man who would be lapping up the attention for being Australian, and subsequently good at everything, is Rod Hokin. Currently spending his southern hemisphere winter in Dublin where there are 20,000 more of the fairer sex. Rocket has also been picking up wickets, not just women, although I suppose it is actually Jack Hokin (the Australian surfer on a world tour - and Rod's alter ego) who is actually getting the notches on the belt. Rocket has claimed 2, 3 and 4 wickets in his first 3 games, and scored an impressive 75 retired in a friendly fixture after (his words not mine) 'people in the bar were being threatened by some long bombs'.
As for Missy, he is well and truly back in the game we call love. Good times.
Missy's Mail 12
The end of another season and no doubt a memorable one for the boys from Chatswood. With a number of players saying goodbye indefinitely to the club, Gordon will have a new look for season 2007/08. Ridiculously senior players in the form of Falk, Stobo, Wilson may be forced to take on a leadership role in higher grades next year. Particularly Michael Falk who is keen to stay ahead of Damon Livermore in the runs for the club race. Falk sitting on 9,881 must be weary of Livermore who will captain next seasons 4th grade team, attempting to be the first man to score 4,500 runs in the one season.
(One of many of Will Smith's farewells)
As stated previously, many players won't be at the club next season which will indeed give opportunities to younger players, or if the selectors follow the Australian Rugby Unions lead, they will be forced to tempt a number of Baseball, Softball, and T-Ball internationals with some considerable cash to cross codes.
I have been privileged enough to attend to a number of farewells for departing Stags. Will Smith, Jordy Holmes, Neil Longhurst, Bretty Rosen have all had shin-digs to send them off in style. Brett's farewell has cost me an arm and a leg.
I've had to pay for his plane ticket, one way, and his accommodation all around the globe. Now all I have to do is put illicit drugs in the Dazzler's bag at customs in July, and rig Harry Evans HSC results forcing him to stay in school for another 12 months. For my sake let's hope Craig Knight isn't back next year, otherwise I'll never be able to buy my way into 1st grade.
Although all the players who won't be around next year will be sorely missed both on and off the field, I think I'll miss Jordy the most. Such a character is Holmes, he epitomises how life should be lived. To an extent anyway. Always full of energy, a great man to have in your team and your club. If one things a certainty it's that you'll get 100% out of the hairiest man in Grade cricket. Probably the most annoying person I know as well. Loves to hit people - particularly the pretty ones. Needless to say I've copped many a beating from Holmes.
The usual suspects will be travelling overseas in the Australian winter for some off-season cricket. Jules, B-Mac, Cubby, Reg and Hoppa will all be making the voyage across the seas for the 5 month tour. I've heard rumblings that Reg is off to Holland. No doubt B-Mac will be making a quick stop off in Denmark to visit Gordon's favourite significant other, Anne Louise.
The 3rd grade Grand Final, as disappointing as that result was for Gordon, saw a good turnout from current and former Stags. Dean Goldsmith and Richie Paul were both spotted down at Chatswood a well as Mark Weise and Gareth Wright who intend to return to the club next season. Dane Tills was there as well, recalling stories of his days in Bathurst Uni and the times he shared, the people he met - and slept with. Good times. His manager, Nick Medcalf was also seen lingering. The post match celebration was ridiculous. There's plenty of youth in the 3rd grade team. There was so much wetness behind the ears I almost slipped and fell as I walked into the Chelsea Bar to meet with the runners-up. A good night was had by all and that's all that needs to be said.
(Looking good Hosko)
I spent the evening with E-Ric, D-Ric, and Jimmy Hosking who had a tale to tell or two. Most notably his run-in with former Miss Universe, and my ex-girlfriend Jennifer Hawkins (Hawko to me - and JOF). When Jimmy arrived outside Cargo Bar in Darling Harbour in a cab and in a state of healthy intoxication, he was surprised to see the first face he came across was that of the new Myer Spokes-Model. Jimmy said he was looking good - and he knew it. I believe him. When is he ever not looking good. She looked at him. He looked at her. Time I'm sure stopped for a while, and Hosko had nothing.
Nothing came out. So star struck was 'Van Damage' (the artist formerly known as DJ James Hosking), that he was unable to produce the perfect pick up line. So on she went, I'm sure heart-broken. Jimmy's one chance with Hawko, gone. Poor Jimmy, he told the story and was evidently heartbroken. I'm sure she's crying into her pillow somewhere. Oh wait, no she's not. She's travelling around the world for television production 'Getaway' and if I'm not mistaken in a relationship at the moment. But still a brush with fame for Hosko.
Finally the prize for 'Tool of the Week' goes to Dave Millar. Even though I have watched in awe as the Colts unbelievable season has unfolded, I must bring down their fearless leader a couple of notches after what happened in their semi-final against Blacktown. As me old mate 'Millsy' was batting on his way to an unbeaten 60 odd he required the sight screen to be moved.
(Missy preparing for next season)
Because the opposition were young and not as developed as a man like Millar (I'm told one of their players was 12 years old - no that's not a joke - well it is but I didn't make it up) he decided to take his gloves off, drop the bat and then run 50 or so metres to move the sightscreen for himself. If only the GDCC's paparazzi member had not been in the trees taking snap shots at Chatswood oval. Forget the leaping lizards competition, that would have easily been the photo of the year.
Thank-you to the Colts who saved me from running naked from the Green Gate to the Harbour Bridge. Midway through the season I had made a bet that if the Colt's didn't win back to back premierships I would make the 20km journey up the Pacific Highway. The grand final came and the Gordon boys had me half nude at 6-90. Luckily for my dignity and modelling contract, Ian Skinner took the score to 180. Sam Hinton eased my nerves stating at 6-90 'That's 50 too many, the Colt's won't need to bat again'.
He wasn't too far off, and the close of play saw premier candidates Randwick-Petersham 6-28. The match was declared a draw the following day - Colt's were back to back premiers and I've stayed warm ever since.
Missy's Mail 11
I have been given a challenge. Life for one M. Higgins has certainly become interesting and I have been asked to write about it. The premise of Missy's Mail is indeed to write about the off-field happenings of the club, but with 90% of Gordon's players living comparatively boring social lives, perhaps my anecdotes are what is needed for the 11th instalment of the mail. There are only so many stories I can tell about Tiddles and they all usually end the same way - with a happy ending.
Michael D. on the D-Floor
However one must be careful. My parents hosted a dinner party a couple of weeks ago, and apparently their guests were big fans of Missy's Mail, they were able to tell them about all that I had been involved in. This gets me to thinking that you never know who is reading what you write. Hopefully not many lawyers. Kelly and Sweeney excluded. Besides, maybe it's time I got a dose of my own medicine. But alas, I had written about 1200 words about my own experiences over the past few weeks, however they were so scandalous that I'm sure no self respecting editor would allow for his or her website to post such readings. So it will have to be the usual. Good times.
The Howitt residence was the setting for the annual 2nd grade get together (I presume next year it will be the annual 5th grade get together after Hoppa takes over the reigns from the ageless Dave Gray), and what a resounding success it was as per usual. Rod "Rod Hokin" Hokin and John "Speak of the Devil" O'Neil-Fuller took out the coveted bocce tournament, receiving a fiercely sort after pen from Ed Howitt Senior's work. Some of the other boys decided to give a former test cricketer a ring to book him to speak in front 500 university students, which was well received by all involved and Longhurst survived a close call with death with a cut toe after he was body slammed by Jordy "Bear" Holmes in the pool.
How he's managing to finish the season with such a savage injury is a true testament to the Pom's character. Only JOF, Jordy, and myself made it out to the Cross that evening. I found myself in Bondi later that morning, not nearly enough aid...but that's all I can say for now.
Careful Missy! Don't get too close to that toe
Jordy Holmes celebrated his 22nd birthday (he claims 22, I think 48 is perhaps more realistic) on Saturday night with an evening distributed between the Mosman Hotel, and Hotel Cremorne aka Minsky's. A handful of Stags participated in the festivities including Longhurst, Cubbage, Michael D., Livermore, and Higgins. I don't care what you say about Dave Michael, the man can dance. I spent a good 2 hours with Dave on the D-Floor inside Minsky's. The problem was that the place was dead and there wasn't a single soul on the D-Floor with us. The only time we left the floor was to head to the bar to drink either JagerBombs or Vodka Red Bulls. I think I ended up back in Bondi later that evening as well.
Injuries can come at inopportune times. You never know when your body is going to give in to the stresses of life. Sam Hinton obviously wasn't expecting to strain his rotator cuff from lying on the couch. But he did.
1st graders must be in tip top condition at all times, not unlike The Cougar - Barry Dawson. Unfortunately for Hint-Dog the story worsens. I have it under good authority that Hinton was in a daze and couldn't move himself from a self inflicted One Tree Hill Marathon on DVD - thus causing some stiffness in the right shoulder. So bad was his injury that he was unable to field for the 2nd day of the clash with Mosman. Well, so he claims. I could have sworn I saw Hint-Dog queuing up outside JB Hi-Fi's for the release of One Tree Hill Season 2 on DVD. Matt "The Cake" Michael got the phone call early on Sunday morning. Luckily his night on the booze was rather sedate in comparison to that of previous evenings.
Nick Medcalf was the first choice for the Hinton's replacement as I understand it after having a mixed day in 2nd grade the day before. Tillsy as he is affectionately known, scored a match winning 51* in the first innings and then taking 4-20 odd ending any hope Mosman had of chasing down Gordon's total. When he returned to the dressing room he and John "Damien" O'Neill-Fuller had lost a substantial amount of money which had been taking from their wallets. Not only this but Medders discovered the half eaten banana which Reg had put in his shoe during the luncheon interval. Poor old Medders. Couldn't have happened to a worse bloke.
Speaking of bad blokes, Craig Knight has left the club for at least the next 4 years to pursue his university studies in Western Australia. I was not aware that he was leaving for so long until just recently when I had the chance to have a chat with him. I sincerely wish Craig the best and hopefully he will return to the club in the future. Craig has been a stalwart of sorts for Gordon, and he's one of the guys that everyone in the club knows. Everyone except for Craig Simmons.
Hinton's weakness... One Tree Hill
It was fantastic to see some non-regular patrons of the Greengate frequent the famous Hotel on Sunday evening, with a little temptation from Falk and Wilson of course. No doubt the big hit were Beau Casson's white pants which he obviously stole from the set of Miami Vice as Sam "One Tree" Hinton so rightly pointed out. My memory of the evening is hazy to say the least; I had not been home from the night before when I re-started to drink on Sunday. I think I saw the Moth there with the lovely Heidi. It almost goes without saying. Doesn't it. If you see one, you invariably see the other. Wouldn't be surprised if Heidi starts training the boys down at Chatswood Oval on a Thursday afternoon. Although, I suppose if they are out socialising I don't have a problem with it. But it must be difficult for the Moth sometimes - what with me there, his first love, and Heidi, his second prize*. Thanks again to Tiddles and AJ Falk for putting money behind the bar. A good time was had by all.
So for the 3rd time this season Gordon has one all 6 grades. Mosman being the latest to join Wests and Blacktown. What about Dave Millar's colts? Surely paying $1.05 for going back to back titles. 3rd Grade is back where they belong, holding outright 1st place. 5ths are looking as good as they ever have and 2's and 4's a still in there with a fighting chance. It's an exciting time of year.
*please don't call me Heidi or give me hate mail. The Moth loves you**.
**Sorry Moth. Missy
Missy's Mail No.10
Where does one begin?
It's been around 2 months since my last post, and I've been questioned on a regular basis when the next Missy's Mail is coming out.
So'. Where have I been??
Well, in short, my absence is due to a bad break-up. I'll spare my readers of the finer points, as there's no need to dwell on the past, but with time healing old wounds and new love on the scene, Missy is back to fulfil his contractual commitments and finish off the 06/07 season.
It's difficult to know where to start. With so much already been and gone I'm not sure what to include and what to exclude. For some reason the first thing that comes to mind is Mitch asking Wayne Phillips where he gets his haircut, at the Gordon Luncheon in front of 400 odd people.
This coming from the fashion guru/life coach who when asked how he gets his hair in a Mohawk he replied, and I quote, 'It's all natural. I sleep on both sides of my head, and so it makes my hair go up in the middle'.
(Falky doing what he does best)
I'll excuse Mitch for this lapse in concentration. There was a lot of alcohol consumed on that afternoon. The luncheon again was a tremendous spectacle and thoroughly enjoyed by all, especially by A.J. Falk, who was tearing up the D-Floor as if he planned to make restorations to Wallaby Bar.
Whilst, of course, staying cool in a pair of authentic 1937 aviator sunglasses.
Brad 'The Dazzler' (as he's been known of late) Rasool must surely get a mention.
Not necessarily for his batting feats, but more for the fact that his name alone increases hits on the web page by 63%. He will be sorely missed around the club when he leaves for university exchange, and I urge someone to develop a ridiculously ridiculous laugh so his lack of presence will be slightly less noticeable. Pic will be bitterly disappointed that he can't bend his young mind over winter down at the rocks.
(The dazzler celebrates his 239)
Richie Kenner, and Craig Knight are also having brief sabbaticals, however due to the lack of friendships both of these men are able to maintain, they will be significantly less missed. Craig Knight made some friends inside Cargo Bar on the night of the luncheon by telling Packers to score some runs' Perhaps not the best thing to say when your struggling to make 30's yourself in Colts. Mitch again chimed in after writing a ballad for James Packman - minus a guitar rift - in the tune of the sculling song. It went a little something like:
'Here's to 20 he's true blue'.'
Mitch subsequently suffered 38 stitches to the forehead and missed 4 rounds of cricket.
I hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas and New Years. There are always a few stories to come out of the last week in December, and this year for me was no different. My December 25 was as planned. Christmas Day.
Fortunately I had received the latest 12th man as a gift from my elder sister and had an opportunity to hide in my room for 120 minutes away from the family who I believe were discussing a boat they once sailed on in 1804.
New Years was scandalous. I started proceedings at the Hosking residence at around 5 in the afternoon. Myself and Jimmy Hosking's younger brother, Dave, attended a couple of house parties before returning back to his place to finish the drinks we had started earlier the day before.
I had purchased a case of Heineken, and had learnt that Hosko had acquired a bottle of Vodka. Being the smart drinker I am, I decided to buy 24 cans of red bull, so that we could have 12 vodka red bulls each. The problem was that we had our last vodka red bull at about 6:30am January 1.
We went to bed. Separately I should add. However, to our amazement we couldn't sleep. Not only could I not sleep but I was keen to attend a marathon somewhere and sprint it. I was bouncing off walls. Literally at times. It was one of the strangest emotions I've ever experienced. I was exhausted from drinking for close on 12 hours, yet felt the need to talk as quickly as Mark Taylor and run up and down trees in the neighbourhood. I just don't know how Pic does it every week?!
("5 - Neil" Longhurst)
Anyway I survived that somehow, even though I was surely experiencing heart palpitations, and got to see the Aussie XI go round to make it 5-0 from the comfort of my own home. Gordon's Barmy Army import, Neil Longhurst, was given the most brilliant nickname, by a 9 year old no less, he was coaching during the week at a cricket camp. '5 Neil'. Absolutely superb. That 9 year old is going somewhere. Maybe we can get him in to replace me from the website.
Unfortunately some bad news. Gordon has lost it's Best In Club. We are now BICless. Rob Evans has decided to hang up the boots in favour of a career behind the weights machines. Obviously his training schedule couldn't allow for Saturdays to be consumed by cricket, Saturday's chest and guns. Jokes aside, it's a shame to see BIC go, but we wish him the best and perhaps we'll see him back someday.
This does leave the title of BIC open though. All suggestions will be seriously considered. Who will it be? Medcalf? Garrat?' Watling? Time will tell.
(Missy says farewell to Best In Club)
Finally I have some dirt on Ahmed. It's been a long time coming, but now I have something to get stuck into him about. He has a new lady friend. I believe they met at SBS HQ (Sydney Bombing Syndicate Headquarters), and have been slowly evolving into one as their journey of love for each other, and for backpacks, blossoms into a prosperous future. He has been strangely absent from a number of Gordon functions which leaves me to the belief that he is choosing dates over mates.
Typical. I feel heartbroken. He promised me so much, did Ahmed, that bastard. All you men are all the same. Just use me for my immaculate hair and unblemished skin, then leave me for someone who has an X chromosome.
Anyway, I appear to have become rather gay all of a sudden. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Maybe I should leave before anymore skeletons come out of the closet' pardon the pun.
Missy's Mail 9
You just can't win with some people. I've heard through the grapevine that my overly honest remarks about Mitch's date a few weeks ago were not well received by some of my readers with an X chromosome. That's not to say the chicks don't still dig me. Although it is now, because I just said 'dig'. I say if the Bee Gees did it, it's alright by me. Hence the purchase of my new incredibly tight white hot pants. Anyway, I seem to have drifted off on a rather unusual tangent'. Let us begin the usual proceedings.
(Richie Kenner with pads)
I have been keenly investigating the website, and more specifically the match reports of all the grades. I found it interesting that Millar decided to attach his life story onto one of his last reports and that Cubbage seems to be plagiarising a number of Higgins' quotes, nevertheless Richie Kenner for mine has been the most impressive scribe of the season thus far. I enjoy reading his work and I know I'm not the only one.
I was briefly chatting to Dan Frogan at the annual Website Review Column Party, and he revealed to me that Kenner is indeed the owner of the dirtiest pads in grade cricket. I say, what Kenner does in his own time with his cricket kit is entirely up to him. There's plenty of money for that kind of the thing on the internet. I've also noticed that every single report writer has a little tag line now at the end of each report. Millar started the trend last year with "Up Gordon", whoever writes the 3rd grade report is obviously on something as the line changes with ridiculous slogans each week but once again Richie Kenner easily takes out the best tag line with "Stay Classy Chatswood (or wherever his team has travelled to)". Very catchy. Very good.
With the first day of round 4 reaching an unprecedented 38 degrees, 1's, 3's and 5's made the journey out to the unforgivable Benson's Lane, infamous for flies and a lack of shade. Chris Lee did his best to stay cool by 'inadvertently' stealing 1st grades drinks bag which held a number of Powerade's and other cool beverages. Chris Archer, God bless him, informed me that Lee was in fact a state regional runner over 100 metres when he was younger. Unbelievable. Far be it from me to victimise Lee and his unique running technique, but as a rather portly 3rd grade captain would say' WOW!!
(Chris Lee in action)
If I was to continue to pepper Lee, and I will, I would also inform my readers that he attended a Rogue Traders concert a few weeks back with his "girlfriend". Ok. Ok. Enough about Lee, poor bloke.
It surprised me that after it being 38 degrees on the first days play it dropped dramatically to a nippy 20 the following weekend. Not to mention the howling gale sweeping from over the mountains. What unusual weather we are having'. Damn global warming. How the hell is Richtor going to build up his base tan with the inconsistency in rays? The same would apply for Tiddles, but I don't think the weather affects the use of a solarium.
A lot of strange things happened during the course of Round 4. The weather perhaps played catalyst to unusual happenings. Maybe it was a full moon.
It all started with the show-but-no-show of John Sawtell. For those who haven't heard the story I'll be gentle; as I am understandably afraid of the man with the build similar to a block of units. Mr. Sawtell drove from Sydney all the way out to Benson's Lane (about an hour away) and pulled into the car park. From there he sat in his car, a few short metres from the ground and then decided he didn't want to play today, so he drove off and back home - forgetting to tell anybody at the club.
I don't really know what else to say. He has definitely given a new nickname to someone who doesn't show up, or shouldn't have shown up. Apart from that I can't quite figure out the logic behind or the thinking behind the scenario.
With Ed Howitt Jr. falling ill during the week, his unavailability left an opening for the role of club coach for a training session. I would have thought someone like Hokin who actually has qualifications as a coach would have taken the reigns and led the boys. Anthony Sherman doesn't come to mind. Although it was indeed Pic who conducted the Tuesday session.
Interestingly enough he allowed himself to bat for a good 23 minutes in the nets whilst the other batsman only received a less than usual 6' minutes. It was good to see Hoppa back at training. Really, really good.
What about the Dazzler!!! It probably'.. No, no, no I'll start again. It is without a doubt the greatest line anybody could possibly use to describe anything which is wonderful. I was in a coffee shop just the other day and yes, I was a ordering an orange mocha frappuccino as all good male models like myself do, and it was so good when I was asked by the very attractive girl serving the hot beverages how my coffee was I exclaimed with a beaming grin "What about the Dazzler". As it turned out the relatively attractive girl was indeed the Dazzler's sister so she understood what I was saying but nevertheless I think you understand my point. Oh, and Dazzler also scored some runs in round 4. Same goes for Hint-Dog. And Weaves. And Hosko.
Sammy Buono will no doubt be close to the pinnacle of the fantasy league competition, what with Hinton as his captain, and now Mitch and Mike Weaver in the runs.
Watch out for a new section on the website called "Moth's Male of the Week".
Just joking.. But not really.
Get a haircut Mahaffey!
Missy's Mail 8
I'm not sure if the Grand Final was the biggest thing that was in the room at the GreenGate Hotel on Sunday night. Well, it was until Mitch decided to invite his RSVP date into a room of 30 guys. What about the beak on that bird!! Mitch's obvious child like fantasies have delved into his adult life, as he attempts to marry a woman with qualities that until Sunday night I cold have sworn only Sesame Street character Big Bird had.
(Missy chasing his RSVP date on Sunday)
Who was she to run away from the man of her dreams anyway? I'm surprised Mitch didn't catch up to her, as I'm sure she would have tilted over due to such a heavy load on one's face. Not to worry Kleemy, true love is out there somewhere in cyberspace. I'm sure of it.
It was a truly wonderful night for those who attended the function on Grand Final night. From the Gate, the Gordon contingent travelled briefly to the Crows Nest Hotel, and then battled on to the rocks. For some of us, this is where the night only began. Myself and Neil Longhurst were privy to see the fight of the century between Plummer and Ahmed at the George St. McDonalds.
Both sides copped a verbal battering. Both parties were too drunk to be coherent.
It was brilliant to see Jason Russell-Jones there at the Gate. I'm pretty sure he's only 14, but still, it was nice of him to stay for the game. JRJ had to leave early because some reckless sole spiked his beer with 4.9% alcohol.
The Gordon Fantasy League has been all the talk around Gordon circles of late. I for one, have enjoyed some of the names that contestants have drummed up. South American Love Bandicoots, Team Strike Force - Omega Quadrant, I Can't Believe I Picked Dylan, The Ho Train, and Nick Medcalf's XII are my favourites. Such imagination.
After drawing everyone's attention to his undervalue in the competition at $70,000, Sam Hinton fired back at his critics with a wonderful hundred at Hurstville Oval in round 1. Of course for the next week he was asking Ed Zelma everything he needed to know about driving one of Chatswood Classic Cars fine automobiles for winning player of the year. He was quickly put in his place with a second ball duck in round 2. I believe Sam Beuno has Hint-Dog as his fantasy league captain.
Hinton was hopeful of an elevation to 1st grade the next week purely on the basis he would like to be introduced to Matt Michael, a man who doesn't talk to lower graders.
My fantasy team (Missy's Mob) currently consists of about 8 players, due to Holmes, Dowsley, Smith, Richtor being unavailable. Oh, and my captain didn't play on the weekend because his pinkie was injured when he was throwing grenades. Damn Ahmed!!
Perhaps the best story of the competition thus far is that Tiddles highest ranked team stands at 53rd. He has 6 teams. And he's a selector. I knew I should be in 1st grade. Get me in there ahead of Zeddie It's an achievement of sorts to be batting the way Ed Zelma has been. 3 innings, 3 balls, 3 ducks. Perhaps Zeddie shouldn't be watching tapes of Agit Agarkar's innings in Australia on how to bat. But who am I to judge?
(Ed Zelma in action)
Nick Dowsley has been given the all clear by doctors to play in round 4 against the Hawks. I wrote previously that he was involved in a BMX incident. Apparently Missy's informants got that wrong. His dislocated shoulder (indeed, not a broken collar bone) was caused via billy-cart'..
"Hey Nick, what happened to your shoulder?"
The last time anybody rode a billy-cart was when Huckleberry Finn was causing havoc in the 1880's. When Dows told me of the incident first hand, the first question I asked was how inebriated he was. He tells me he hadn't had one drink. I'm not sure if that's all together a good thing though. I mean, if he was drunk then sure I can understand the pleasure of riding that form of transportation. But when your sober? Why not catch a bus?
I would like to be the first to congratulate Tim Packman on his impending engagement. "The Moth" as he is affectionately known hasn't been seen for some time now which leads me to the conclusion that his dream of eloping has come to pass. Perhaps a baby moth is on the way. Maybe that's being too forward. If it is, only he will be able to tell me. Of course seeing that he is starting to settle down in his little moth nest and rarely shows his face in public without his beloved by his side, that may never happen.
It was tremendous to see Dean Goldsmith at Sydney Uni on Saturday. Goldy, a stalwart of Gordon Cricket, has retired from the game this year. He looked to be very healthy and has just returned from a month in France. Mark Wiese also returned for this round in 5th grade. Wiesey married the lovely Jessica last year and is currently doing a PHD, leaving not enough time for full-time cricketing commitments, but it was great to have him on board this week.
I've heard from my spies around Sydney, and generally the world, that "The Judge" Adair Durie will be making a return to Chatswood Oval. Adair played 1st grade for Gordon before dropping down to 3's where he was a vital cog in the 3rd grade premiership, a side Will Smith played in last time he was here, now in 1st grade. Not THE Will Smith for overseas readers. I'm pretty confident of that anyway.
(Adair Durie from the archives)
"Insert short funny sentence here"
Missy's Mail 7
If you play international cricket, you want to play at Lords. If you play Australian state cricket, you want to play at the MCG. If you play for Gordon you want to be at Chatswood Oval. It was great to be back at the home of Gordon Cricket for pre-season training. I understand that they have replaced what once was a day care centre with a bar underneath the main grandstand. A strange swap, and I'm not sure who saw that potential, but I think it's brilliant. Finally Gordon cricketers have a place to drink and socialise.
Chatswood Oval itself appears to have held up well over the rugby season, comparatively to that of previous years. I suppose it helps that the Gordon rugby players haven't made a tackle on the surface all year, but nevertheless the turf is far less patchy than I can recall. It makes it noticeably easier to perform simple fielding drills when the ball doesn't leap up and attack your perfectly sculpted face.
An impressive number turned out for the first session back at Chatswood, I even saw Best In Club (Robbie Evans) took time out from his hectic schedule of bicep curls and bench-press to make an appearance. As always, a few new faces have shown their hand and it would seem that they could be useful acquisitions for the club.
(Best In Club meets with Missy)
Unfortunately, living in Australia has it's detracting features as well as it's many, many benefits. English recruit Neil Longhurst has found this very quickly, as he enjoys the warmth and the sunshine, but has been thrown in the deep end via being sent to live at the Plummer household. He can either be thankful that thorns have roses, or be remorseful that roses have thorns. Australia is a rose, Plum is a thorn.
The players who have had an tenure overseas are slowly returning home now.
Club Captain Brendan MacDonald is the first to do so. His familiar strut, swank, saunter, stretch and stride was welcomed back to the SCG on Saturday afternoon for a make-up training session. I caught up with B-Mac at the newly renovated GreenGate to discuss ideas for social functions during the season, and to drink beer. I can't give away too much, but I feel confident that the new leadership pairing of MacDonald and Higgins may lead to something so beautiful, words escape me.
(BMac is back)
John O'Neill-Fuller will be returning home from the UK on Saturday. I'll probably be able to write an article just on Pumps, Missy's Mail - The X-Files. Anyone interested in the activities of JOF can read the next MM, or you can simply read the police report available at all good Cop Shops.
Returning Stag Will Smith has struck 141 against Middlesex and added 288 with Stephen Fleming for the 3rd wicket. Hitting his straps at a very beneficial time for Gordon. I have also learnt that he will be residing with The "Tim Packman" Moth during the Australian summer. Will is fortunate that Gordon's Personal Trainer has recently re-found love, and is not the wild, swinging ladies man of old. Or perhaps he is unfortunate not to be involved in such debauchery.
Speaking of love, the gentle and erotic whispers of RSVP.com.au have all ready begun to circulate as Pic tries to emulate his hero, Damon Livermore, in putting at least 90% of internet instigated dates through the covers. It will be like charting Ricky Ponting's chase to surpass Viv Richards record breaking year with the bat. Except it's Pic instead of Ponting, and women not runs.
(Pic preparing to go onto RSVP)
Love has begun to stream through the club as if it were a resplendent river flowing with no bounds to the hearts and minds of Stags everywhere. Richie Brown, "The Hornet" to many of our readers, has found companionship of the greatest kind in the inner city angst of Australia's mafia home, Melbourne.
His bucks night was attended by a number of Gordon's socialites, including Mitchell Kleem. Mitch's arrival to the soiree was surprising to say the least but seeing the live entertainment didn't show, Mitch was forced to bare all in what was a truly thrilling event for those involved/responsible.
None of this happened, but I would love to see it. It would be like a drug for the eyes.
Nick Dowsley will not be starting the season, as he has broken his collar bone. "Digger" has very little history of reckless events (a strong liberal supporter) but for some reason suddenly felt the urge to emulate his lifelong hero Evel Knievl, and jump the snake river canyon on his BMX . Now, as I understand it Mr. Dowsley went to Sydney Grammar and achieved something like 99.852345 in his HSC, currently works for the very respectable Macquarie bank, and I would have thought past the stage of riding a bike.
(Nick Dowsley pre shoulder)
Such an act appears out of character. ND now joins the illustrious BMX team of Gordon representatives including Plummer, who a couple of years ago rode his recently "purchased" hog off a pier.
I had heard initially that he was to be out for 3 months. That must be a complete fallacy, as it would have to be the worst break in a collar bone in the history of breaking collar bones, for Nick to be out of action for 3 months. But he will be in a sling for a couple of weeks.
The Gordon District Cricket Clubs inaugural fantasy league competition is soon to be up and running. I was privy to receive one of the first information packages (sheet of paper with staple) on Tuesday night. The initiative comes from Dylan Connel and his associate Ed Howitt Jr. I can't believe these two have created an initiative. I'm sure more will be posted about this exciting new competition, and I'll be getting right behind it, but I really think Dylan and Hoppa need to get out more. Somewhere. Northern Districts maybe.
Good luck to Will Sweeney this weekend playing in his second consecutive Suburban Rugby 1st division Grand Final at T.G. Milner on Saturday. He will be representing Knox Old Boys, renowned for their drinking and ridiculous partying, and they will play the undefeated Drummoyne. Win or lose his Saturday night will be wild. It should be interesting how many overs he bowls against Canberra on Sunday. I'm gonna go with 2.3.'. in 3 spells.
Missy's Mail 6
I'm in Darrel Hair's corner on this one. What Pakistan did by refusing to resume the days play and hide in the dressing rooms was nothing short of childish. Yet I've heard nothing in the media other than how Darrel Hair is victimising nations from the sub-continent. Why? Because it sells more papers. Surely I can't be the only one who thinks this. I know Mr. Hair is a big fan of Missy's Mail, so I'd like to send him my best wishes for the upcoming hearing. Heaven forbid if he was ever to umpire a match whilst Iqbal Ahmed was bowling though, or for that matter if Dean Jones was ever to commentate a Gordon lower grade fixture.
I met up with Will Sweeney at the holy GreenGate Hotel to catch Club 58 (Brett Lee "and friends"). To say that Brett Lee did nothing would be unfair, as I'm sure it's incredibly hard to play the same 4 notes on bass guitar for every song of the night. Undoubtedly the highlight of Brett's night was the sculling of a rum and coke. It was great to see Australian cricket getting back to its grass roots.
I could have easily made the papers the next morning had I made a move on Brett Lee, and then claimed that he was drunk and I was assaulted. But I don't have time for that, and he may have killed me whilst striking a nervous E minor.
Zig and Zag, Beavis and Butthead, Cheech and Chong, Batman and Robin. These are just a few of the names used to describe the new leadership combination at the club. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Brendan McDonald on his appointment as Club Captain for season 06/07. He joins an illustrious list of great club men who have led successful campaigns for the famous club. I would also like to this opportunity to congratulate myself on the appointment as Club Vice-Captain. Well done Higgo, we here at Missy's Mail are all behind you.
Damon Livermore has been on fire on the field of late. He scored 108, took 6-37, and then hit 68 and snared three catches in the space of 7 days. I'm always interested to see what Reg is doing, and what its name is, when he sends me an email. In the past you may remember the interest that Reggie had in a 55 year old. Well that demographic has dropped 37 years. I do not wish to elaborate from here. Get a calculator, then laugh. Reg also sent his best wishes to returning Stag Will Smith.
'Rocket' Rod Hokin has been back in touch recently and the news is good. Rocket has struck back to back hundreds and his team currently sits in 3rd with 3 games to play. His first century included a 6 off the last ball of the match to win the game. Firstly, thanks Rocket for elaborating on that story, I'm sure it would have been a real bore, and secondly the bowling must be Rocket-Like for Hokin to strike a maximum over what must have been a field the size of a large bath-tub. Rocket's form has no doubt put him in great spirits as he travels around the country, frothy chop in hand. It will be great to see one of the clubs hardest workers back for round 1.
With today being 1 month out from round 1, the last few weeks have seen the Stags get into some heavy preparation at Narrabeen Sports Academy. Tim "The Moth" Packman has been whipping us all into shape, and it was great to see some familiar faces down at the nets. Whilst the sessions have been productive in blowing out many, many cobwebs, the sessions at Chatswood is where it all begins. I can't wait to get back down at Chatswood oval. The familiar sight of Michael Falk erecting the nets with Ed Howitt and a few busy workers, the vision of Mitch trotting after his ball which ended up somewhere near the Mandarin Centre, the smell of Pumps' cigarettes wafting through the sea of cricket kits. Yep, Chatswood is where it's at. Whatever "it" exactly is. I can understand why so many mislead youths hang out there.
Reece Bombas has been keenly seeking me out wanting to know if a final result has come in from the "Name Reece Bombas Competition". I think either 'Poppa' 'Nads' or 'Lance Armstrong' are the three most popular candidates. A few names are returning to Chatswood this season, some have already come to training, others will attend soon. Dave Storey, after considering hanging up the boots for a season, has informed me he will be playing a handful of fixtures whenever possible. This news will be well received by anyone who has played with Stores in the past.
Richie Paul will not be re-joining the ranks this year after a short stint on the side lines last season. He will however, be lending his guidance and careful hand for Friday night training camps, presumably to be held at Sydney's prestigious Cargo Bar in Cockle Bay. Richie gave birth to what is now more commonly known as 'Cargo Bar Syndrome' (or CBS for those closer to the source).
Kieran Jones, a man who helped me through my adolescent cricketing days in the Green Shield Competition as a life coach, mentor, father-figure, and source for underage drinking, has also been spotted rolling the arm over. The club is oozing with talent at the moment and have a plethora of experience to boot - a situation the club has not been in for a lengthy stage.
Missy's Mail 7 will be posted after the first Chatswood session as there is little news to report on at this quite stage before the fun all begins. So stay tuned. Until then, it was good to catch up and I'll speak to you soon.
A final thought;
I wish I was a punk rocker with flowers in my hair.
Missy's Mail - The Nicholson Edition
What a difference a few days can make in the mindset of a cricketer. I received an email from Matthew Nicholson in relation to the upcoming Missy's Mail 6 (stay tuned) which described his latest happenings on and off the field. Here's what he had to say:
Literally no news for me on the field. I can't remember the last wicket I got but have been getting a few runs lately. We should save the groundsman the trouble of preparing a wicket and just put the stumps up in the car park, it's probably bigger, the outfield would definitely be slower and there might be something resembling life in the tarmac. Our last two championship games have seen scores of 5 for 660 and 5 - 674, we rolled the Essex boys the other day for 620.
I received that email on Monday. 5 days later and I hear that fortunes had changed slightly for Nicho.
Northamptonshire v. Gloucestershire
Toss won by Northants. Chris Rodgers, from Western Australia, was the only batsman cashing in on what must have been a respectable batting pitch notching up 319 in Northants total of All Out 628
The second innings of the match, Gloucestershire's first, saw Nicho come into his own claiming 7-62, claiming international scalp Hamish Marshall for 1. It doesn't really matter that he's a Kiwi, an international scalp is just that. An international scalp. Even more impressively Nicho dismissed 5 of the first 6 batsmen. On a deck that your team scored 600+ that's a fair achievement. Nicholson's 7 wickets helped dismiss Gloucestershire for 350, a lead of 328 at the close of the first innings. Gloucestershire's second dig has started somewhat better with the first wicket going down at 229, to Nicho, and the second wicket soon after at 244, to Nicho (making it 9 for the match).
If one was too take into consideration the nature of these pitches they are playing on, the fact that our fearless 1st Grade Captain has even managed 2 wickets is worthy of recognition. On top of the flat dry decks, the unbearable and searing heat, an obvious factor in the pitches, can't make bowling much fun. I hope Nicho makes the 1st grade team this year. He's good.
Missy's Mail 5
It's close. The season beckons. We can begin to feel our fingers and toes once more. It must mean it's getting above minus 4 again. I for one look forward to the baking hot Saturdays where any celebrity chef can slightly brown 11 fielders, rotate 2 batsmen and grill the umpires. Most of all, the furious tempest will leave us for 6 more months, and that means I won't have to wipe the hair from my eyes every 4.3 seconds.
(B-Mac and Midnight watch the cricket on their day off from work!)
It's been so long since we spoke. I hope all is well at your end of the monitor. News has trickled through slower than a wet week and subsequently I have been MIA for the last few weeks. South Africa may have even taken a wicket since Missy's Mail 4.
Brendan McDonald has found himself in the thick of things once again. It would be silly of any reader to assume that I am referring to a particular feat on the cricket field. Rather B-Macs best work has come, once again, whilst being naked. Threadbare. Au naturel. Unveiled. Exposed. Use whatever adjective you like, the story is a classic. Unfortunately, B-Mac was supposed to send me a picture in reference to the story which has yet to see the light of day so I've decided to bench the story until I can give it the full coverage it deserves. Pardon the Pun.
But it was by far the "Email of the Week", and perhaps a strong contender for "Email of the Off-Season". (Which is a title I made up 10 minutes ago).
Still I'd say a close second to Reggies efforts which were publicised in Missy's Mail 4. Hopefully I can expand on the escapades of Brendan in the 6th instalment of this review.
James Packman has returned to the country after playing cricket in Scotland over the past month. His form impressed. With bat, and unfortunately ball. A Michelle 5/ will have Packers piping up for a crack with the new ball at some stage in the Sydney Grade Competition and hopefully for NSW. He had scored 2 hundreds last time I had spoken to him, one of those being played on the Glen Eagles Ryder Cup Course. A day he has described as brilliant, only to be ruined by some horrific golf.
(Hinton and Packman)
Twenty20. What a great game. Is it obvious I'm not a bowler? Matthew Nicholson seems to dislike the concept of the crowd pleasing and eye catching game. If I was writing for a tabloid, and sometimes I like to think I am, I'd say; "he has labelled the game a joke." But I'm not so, I'll have those remarks stricken from the record. Nicho took on returning Stag Will Smith in the Quater-Final of the Twenty20 Competition where Smith's Nottinghamshire knocked over Nicho's Northamptonshire. Neither having an input in the game however. Will Smith remaining 0* off 0 deliveries and Nicho claiming 1/.
Damon Livermore has been far more reserved this time around. Scores on the field include 70, 50 not out, and 92. I can't say what else he's doing. I'll give you a clue. The 4th box of tissues has been 'discharged'.
Matt Makepeace has struck a run of form on the field (I doubt off it) scoring a remarkable 100 even, chasing down 249 for victory. He smashed 71 off 45 before being hit with a beam ball. He claims it was a beamer, I wouldn't be surprised if there was a good shot for LBW after contact was made with his ribs. He completed his 100 with a few balls to spare. Shortly after he followed up his hundred with 57 in a low scoring encounter. Good to hear Peace is hitting his straps again.
Now for the news you've all been waiting for. The news back home. Where to begin'..Tiddles.
Although I was an absentee from the AGM, word has spread like wildfire about the "Speech" if one cold call it that, that the esteemed Tony Wilson made.
It was a shame I wasn't there for the last time Tiddles will ever be asked to speak at a public event. Anywhere. It's beyond me what exactly the Hugh Heffner endorsed drug has to do with bat and ball'. Well maybe I can now, but still viagra is hardly a topic that was on the agenda for Gordon's 101st Annual General Meeting.
Although I wasn't at Gordon's AGM I was at the Blue Gum for our rivals and neighbours Northern Districts AGM. Both Iqbal Ahmed and myself spotted ex-international cricketer and current air conditioning spokesperson Mark Taylor, and we were both inebriated and brazen enough to question if the air conditioning was a "Fujitsu" console over the main bar.
Perhaps I'll go to the GreenGate to catch Brett Lee's band, and cry out some banter. Hoppa suggested that I go and sidle up next to his wife whilst he jams with his fellow band cohorts. Brett Lee's band just became a little more appealing.
Gordon's favourite commercial extra, Leon Gulaptis, has apparently found love abroad. News has it that Gullapa has a new love interest in the United States. I remember a time when I was with Leon at Cabana Bar and was with him whilst he attempted to pick up girls with an American accent. It probably wasn't the worst accent I've ever heard, mainly because it was about as coherent as any one of Mitchell Kleem's social commentaries.
(Leon gives the thumbs up for his new love)
Speaking of travel Missy's Mail has also learnt that Gordon's very own lepricorn, Richie Kenner, is planning to travel around the country to see every test match of the upcoming Ashes series. Richie was a vital cog in the Colts winning season, including a hundred in the final of the Metropolitan cup.
Training has already begun for the younger Stags at the club. The Academy's Under 18 and Under 21 divisions have so far had 2 pre-pre-season training sessions with pleasing results. It was marvellous to see some old heads there; Stepho, Tiddles, Falky, Smithy. Stobo was also there. Speaking of which, the topic was brought up at the GreenGate about who will take over the reigns as my opposite number, now that Stobo is retired until hmmmm'.
I'd say round 8. Matthew Kelly is the obvious choice, what with his quick quips and razor sharp intellect that could raise a laugh even from the most hardened of criminals in a court of law. But Kells has been good to Higgins, and too much respect and the fear of being publicly humiliated lies there.
Sammy Hinton's name was mentioned. A strong candidate. Time will tell.
So much news to give. If only I wrote half of it down. I'll have to have a good catch up with you all this Sunday after the first of four pre-season practices. Hoppa and I have already arranged to head to the GreenGate after the 4 O'clock finish. It would be brilliant to see a large Gordon contingent there for a catch up.
Lastly I come to Reece Bombas. Reece, "Bomber" as he is CURRENTLY known, requires a new nickname. He shall break free of the shackles of his current alias, and we as a club will rise up and vote for a new pet name for Bombas.
A couple of years ago Bomber was fielding at slip next to the recently retired Dean Goldsmith. When Goldy threw the ball to the surprised Bombas, the collision between the cricket ball and his testicle was of a colossal nature. A clash of epic proportions. Two years on and Reece has had the fluid removed from the site of the injury. Suddenly the Spice Girls 1997 hit single "2 become 1" became an anthem and a way of life rather than a crap 90's song, and the Jennifer Anniston/Vince Vaughn flick "The Break Up" became autobiographical.
So, under the instruction of many senior heads at the GDCC the new name will be voted on via secret ballot. So secret that there isn't even a ballot. But tell me what your thoughts are on these:
A: Poppa (Poppa-Testie)
B: The One
C: The Siamese Twin
D: Reece Bombas
F: Niagara Balls
G: Room Available
I: One Left Standing
J: Single and Loving It
K: The Lone Nut
Missy's Mail No. 4
Soccer, football to our international readers, has once again shown it's true colours. The immense disappointment that we all felt at about 4am on Monday morning was overwhelming. Some found it necessary to cry, others remembered that about a month ago no-one knew who Lucas Neil was. I recovered from the loss the next day by watching a couple of great flicks, namely 'The Italian Job' and 'Legends of The Fall', somehow they became ironically relevant. I was part of a strong and vocal crowd at St. Leonards'
Cabana Bar. Unsurprisingly I ran into a number of youthful Stags. Jimmy Hosking, Sammy Hinton, Dan Richtor, and most enjoyably Andrew Plummer.
That's right'. Plummer. What an experience it was to see that man again. I watched the second 45 minutes of the debacle next to the Plum and after it was over he decided to show his disgust by hurling his recently vacated schooner glass at the screen. The screen being above the exit made things interesting for the crowd leaving, as they ran through a glass gauntlet.
That's the kind of guy Plum is, if he likes you he's your best mate'if not he'll throw a schooner glass at you.
Enough now of that silly round-ball game. We can all get some sleep now, unless you're watching Wimbledon. On to cricket.
Mathew Nicholson seems to be on a hot run of form, scoring a hundred last publication and now snaring 9 poles for his county. The Twenty/20 competition has commenced and will no doubt give Nicho a chance to show off all aspects of his game. The embarkation of the 20/20 gives our fearless 1st grade captain about 3 weeks for some long overdue R&R. He intends to spend this time golfing and sleeping. Just a few of our favourite "ings" here at the GDCC.
A new electronic mail from one of many Gordon's socialites, Damon Livermore, gave insight to the mind of a single man. On the field rain has delayed the run of form that Reggie has had of late, only adding 30 and a couple of poles to the seasons aggregates. Whilst off the field, a couple of delightful stories which made most interesting reading. I feel I won't be able to do justice to this first story, so I will just about copy and paste from my overflowing hotmail.
Reggie will narrate:
After a few beers on Saturday night, i was walking home to my captains house from the local and only night club. On my journey - i stumbled across a 4 tonne excavator parked on the side of the road. Funnily enough the door was unlocked and the keys were under the seat. So i jumped into the saddle ( i have over 40hrs experience on the machines) started her up, switched off the safety, turned up the throttle and displayed my skills as an operator to a few of the local lads ( all about 18yrs old ... so easily impressed) after a few tricks - i thought it was a good idea to block the road with the machine and make a clean get away. So i extended the boom across the road and there was no way a car could get through. After stopping off at a kebab shop with my new found mates, my rubber arm was twisted - to give the keys to the boys so they could enjoy life as an operator of a 4 tonne excavator.
As i was munching on my badly packed kebab - the boys were well into a bit of excavation...... until the police arrived. Nabbed one of the boys....
Damo (Reggie) was already in full flight in the opposite direction.
And there you have it. The first, second, and third time I read this I was in complete fits of laughter. Then I thought to myself, surely Reg was doing this when he was 18 himself. Now 30, Livermore should know better than to get a kebab on the way home from the local.
Reggies second story involves him flirting with an unidentified "tidy" female. Reg is staying in very much a one horse town, and without much "talent" around he found himself instantly aroused at the site of a 30-something blonde outside his local supermarket climbing out of a red MG convertible. After unsuccessfully handing out his RSVP identification, he read the social pages two days later only to spot the very same "tidy" female inside. It was Kate Moss. Only Damon Livermore. Maybe Pumps.
(What a lovely couple)
Not to be outdone Current Club Captain John O'Neill-Fuller has also found himself in recent times to have a bit of celebrity about him. Following an outing at the Arena Magazine Awards (don't bother asking me, or for that matter pumps, how he got in) Pumps was splashed all over the social pages.
Well when I say splashed, he was really in the background of a photo. Still, I've never been in the social pages and I've got to be at least 3 maybe 4 times better looking than John O'Neill-Fuller. Right?' Right? JOF said, and I quote, "Apparently there were lots of famous people there, but I had no idea who they were". I don't think Pumps realised the famous people weren't behind the bar.
(JOF with "friends")
With the Soccer World Cup reaching unprecedented heights in Australia some of our Stags, JOF included, have been loving every moment in the UK. The Walkabout is/was Pumps' favourite institution to attend for the Aussie fixtures, and learnt some rules very quickly. Number 1 being never to wear clothes that you ever want to wear again, because upon a goal being scored it became tradition to throw whatever drink you had in the air.
On the pitch, JOF has had a run of scores in good wins for his club. 117 in the Sunday League in a 12 run victory, 60 in a 120 run win, 36 in a losing draw, and 78 in a tight 10 run win. When pumps took on Enfield, Ed Howitt Jr.'s former club, JOF was treated to some colourful language and informed sledging thanks to a plethora of information given by Hoppa.
Now for on a different field/off field news. Ben Garratt, a legendary Stag in his own right, has been playing Reserve Grade for the Avoca Sharks in the Central Coast Premier League. BG seems to be quite a hit at his club, even having his own article posted on the Avoca Sharks website (www.avocafc.com) called "The Reserve Grade Rant". One can view BG's quick wit by entering the Shark Speak icon and having a scout round the forums. BG doesn't know it yet, but he now owes me for eternity for giving him a "free" plug during my column.
I was fortunate enough to have a beer with the peoples champion, Iqbal Ahmed, for some Wednesday night trivia at the Blue Gum. All is well in the Ahmed-land (more commonly known as Saudi-Arabia) as he continues to play in the winter cricket league with Hoppa, Bretty, Cuppy, to name a few and a couple of West Pymble representatives.
I could not end this column without saying hello to a very dear friend of Missy's Mail. Meg. Meg is a big fan of Missy, and Missy is a big fan of Meg.
Thank-you dearly for your love mail, and scented underwear in which you sent via air-post. Of course none of this really happened, but my ego would like to think that I have fans from all over the planet.
Unfortunately Missy's Mail IV must end on a sad and tragic note, on two counts. Firstly, I ran into Las Kannangara outside Turramurra station only to receive news that he has badly injured his knee playing soccer. He will be out of action for up to 10 months. This is a sad blow for all club men who will no doubt know Gordon's pocket size Sri Lankan. We wish him a speedy recovery.
(Las in action)
Finally, I came across Brendan McDonald at the Commodore on Thursday night.
I had to double take because I could have sworn he left for England a number of months ago. Unfortunately Bmacs return was due to tragic circumstances.
Nathan Moss, Mossy to his mates, was seriously injured when he was struck by a car jogging across the road. Macca was onboard the next flight just 6 hours after receiving the phone call. Nathan passed away in hospital last Wednesday. Brendan was grateful though to have spent the last week of his best mates life beside him at the hospital. On behalf of Gordon Cricket we send our deepest condolences to the Moss family, and to his group of mates who I'm sure will never forget their friend.
A terrible, terrible way to end an article, but it's an eye-opener to how precious life is. To dust off an old clich' Enjoy every day like it was your last.
Missy's Mail No. III
This name won't mean a lot to many, if any of our readers. However, it is he who is responsible for the death of our dearly beloved William Sweeney. May he rest in peace. Pule Misa played for the Samoan Rugby team in the 1999 World Cup. 7 years later and he is now running around for the Drummoyne Rugby Union team in the NSW suburban rugby competition. 7 years ago William Sweeney was running around for the under 13 division at schoolboy level.
(Pule in action)
Suffice to say that when the two met in a round 7 clash a couple of Saturdays ago the ex-international ran circles around our mate Shweens.
Well, not really circles, it was more of a straight line up and down and over the Knox Old Boy Outside Centre. In cricketing terms it would be like watching Craig McDermott bowl to my 9 year old, slightly retarded next door neighbour. I'm glad it was him rather than me. However, Shweens did make a full recovery to score 3 tries against Woolhara Colleagues the following week.
The ever reliable Matthew Nicholson has, once again, been first to respond to my regular (and probably slightly annoying) group of emails. This website has already publicised his recent success with the bat, but he says the wickets have been slow with little assistance to the pace bowlers, so he felt his best contribution to the team would be with the blade. Cricket evidently takes up most of the time Nicho has, in fact 11 of the past 12 days he's spent on the field, leaving little time for him to socialise the way I'm sure the likes of Reg and Pumps are. I suppose it also helps that he's married. This may help him to steer clear from the likes of O'Neill-Fuller. Bad Man.
Lance Klusner has been the star for Northants this season, and Nicho is trying his very best to tempt him down old Chatswood way in 2011 when he hangs up his 14 pound bat. I'd like to think he'd fit in well wearing that famous old Stag over his heart. Imagine Kenner or Klemmy bowling to the big hitting left hander. Or having a beer with the established all rounder after training. Of course, this would never occur because once he found out that Hoppa had a better "wrench shot" than him, his jealously would force him to leave the club, the state and eventually the country.
Matty Makepeace has struggled to get on the pitch of late with constant precipitation. This of course means that copious quantities of alcohol have been consumed. Unfortunately he was quoted as saying "Let's just say I took Tiddles advice and put it into practice last week." I don't want to know what that means, and I choose to ignore that it was ever said. When 'Big-Peace' has had the chance to play he has had some recent success and hit 107 not out to set a total of 289. The opposing side was dismissed for 179.
(Matt Makepeace in action)
Rod Hokin, 'Rocket' to his friends, appears to be having a sterling season and his form continues to impress. Rocket scored 60 in a 20/20 fixture last Wednesday, then scored 92 on Saturday chasing down a total of 238 to win.
Rocket hadn't finished there though and score 104 on Sunday in the Devon Cup against a Premier Division side.
Apart from these three generous players, there is no other news to report from overseas. Perhaps if the rest of them were not as lazy and would reply to me once in a while I could write a proper article about things people care about. Such is life. Now for off field news.
Surprisingly enough JOF won't feature in this edition of off-field news.
Some will be pleased, others will cry.
On the 23rd of May, this year, I sat down in my favourite arm chair to read my favourite local paper, The North Shore Times. I was pleased to read an article about the potential of young West Australian spinner Beau Cassen joining the Gordon ranks in the next season. Apparently Gordon has appeared as the front runner to sign the up-and-comer. Perhaps more of this story will come to hand as the 2006-2007 approaches.
(The classic action of Stobs)
Perhaps the best news so far is the on again-off again retirement of nemesis Richard Stobo, or Richard Stobo to his friends, is once again on. A whisper from a little birdie who remains to be unnamed informed me of his retirement. An email to Tiddles, both confirmed and denied his retirement. I for one hope Stobo does not retire. If he is not at the club, who will I ridicule. As easy as that question appears to be to answer, it wouldn't be the same. Although Stobo has achieved many things in his long, long, long, long career perhaps his drive to win a higher, lower grade premiership will spur him on for 6 more months of Higgins' abuse.
Thursday, June 8 saw Higgins turn from an adolescent male to an adolescent.
To be more specific from 19 to 20. That's right Higgins has finally become slightly less female. The event was celebrated prodigiously at the GreenGate, the Commodore and of course Alberts Corner bar. On this evening I was fortunate to run into Sam Hinton. 6 hours earlier I received a phone call from Tiddles who informed me of a new love interest in Slammin' Sammy's life. The two met somewhere in Kings Cross, and consummated the mutual love and respect for each other in one of the cross' many five star alley ways.
Or so the story goes. Hint-Dog was far from quick to quash the rumours.
(Why is Sam smiling?)
As long as we're talking about love and other romantic things, I am pleased to be the bearer of good news. Anthony Eddington will be tying the knot with the lovely Nina on April 20 next year. Followers of Gordon Cricket and players both past and present will remember Edo for playing in the 4th grade premiership winning side in the 2004/05 season. Those who were a little closer to Edo will know that he could never keep a secret, no mater how degrading to himself.
A genuinely good bloke and we wish him all the best for his upcoming season in Scotland in the Premier League.
(Edo or the Twann at Chatswood last season)
Jules Stephenson is on the mend after an elbow operation last Friday. The tendonitis in his elbow turned out to be a bone spur with cartilage damage. The surgeon hopes he will be able to bowl without pain by the end of August.
What kind of green and gold blooded Australian would I be if I didn't mention the Soccer World Cup. Something that infuriates me on a regular basis is when people call soccer, football. Anyway, nitpicking aside, what a magnificent match it was on Monday night against the Japanese. I was lucky enough to reserve Gold Class seats at the GreenGate for the 11 o'clock kick off.
For 83 long minutes it appeared as though the Aussies would go home dejected and somewhat angry over a controversial Japan goal. I have witnessed many, many great Australian sporting victories, however never have I received such goose bumps when the first, second and third goal struck the back of the net. Even after seeing each goal 27 times.
After my infinite schooner of VB and after the 9th rendition of "Ole', Ole', Ole'" I wandered on home. What a wonderful night, one that I won't forget for a while yet. Perhaps it will become one of those "Where were you questions". Maybe not. If Australia beats Brazil I'll shave my head.
"Bring on Brazil" I can hear you bastards say.
Missy's Mail No.2
Good morning, afternoon, or evening to everyone all over the globe. I thank everyone for their emails. I have been inundated with messages of love everywhere from Northern Ireland to North Sydney. The good news is I have news to report on this time. Happy days.
First of all we travel to the UK, Didsbury to be more specific where Brendan MacDonald currently flaunts, taunts and occasionally plays cricket. Round 3 in the local competition saw B-Mac achieve his greatest feat yet' a four car pile up. It would appear he was driving to a fixture in his newly paid BMW automobile and found it necessary to be the centre of attention. And what better way to achieve such a thing than a prang. Word on the web is he had recently paid his road tax, insurance, and a full tank of petrol (no doubt the most costly of them all). He was rescued, probably by a SWAT team, and in time for the game where he subsequently did nothing. The original car he was driving, evidently poorly, was an 11 year old Beamer which he paid for with his "hard earned." I use this term very loosely. He is currently swanning around in a brand new BMW via his insurance company. Fewer things in life are more unjust.
We stay in the UK and travel to Lechdale, in the Cotswolds Districts.
Population 3000. One of whom is our beloved Damon Livermore. "Reggie" will be over there for 6 months and that will probably give him enough time to'.
Become acquainted with all members of the town. Reg is currently residing in 'Lechdale Manor' an 18th century mansion. 30 rooms, 20 acres. His "roomy" is Roy Burton who previously occupied the goalkeeping position for then Premiership club Oxford United in the 80's and 90s. Apparently Reg is living in the area where the "Wind In The Willows" is set.
Reg is playing for Lechdale Cricket Club in the Wiltshire League, 1st division.
He has played 2 games, won both. The club play 45 over one day cricket with bowling and fielding restrictions 1st game: 6 - 254 ( Reggie 136 not out) Opposition: 7 - 154 2nd game: 5 - 338 ( Reggie 183 not out) Opposition 245: ( Reggie 2 - 17 from 5)
Perhaps the fact that Reg has less female distractions is assisting his cricket. In particular his bowling. In regards to his off field behaviour, well I can't reveal such information. He does go onto to say something about using a lot of tissues though. Whatever that means. Maybe he's sick.
On a similar note John O'Neill-Fuller, JOF to his mates, or Pumps to his lovers is enjoying life to the fullest on his overseas trip. Pumps is staying in Notting Hill with his captain. His cricket as he puts it didn't fare so well in his first outing. Jetlag took over in his first match after taking 2-25, then scoring 1. The second fixture saw JOF score 55 not out before rain conveniently interrupted his run to an unbeaten 640. After the game he met a "little Danish bird" (his words, not mine) and from there I really can't extend on this particular story. I'm not really in the mood to being an accessory, nor do I wish to be cross-examined.
The next couple of days he spent working. He has a job with Middlesex County Cricket Board running coaching courses etc. He spent a training day at Lords, the cricket ground I presume and not the church, which he describes as "quality". He also spent a day watching the test match there (England v Sri Lanka). Another story has apparently come of that day. And the same applies to my unwillingness not to appear in a court of justice.
Rod Hokin has also been in contact. He has scored another 71 runs, after adding to his ton the week before. As well as runs Rocket has picked up a few cheeky poles in the process. Rocky has been touring Europe which involves drinking in 10 different countries apparently.
Matthew Nicholson is playing some good cricket, although I'll have to take his word for it, I don't actually have any numbers. Not much time for Nicho to enjoy the lifestyles that perhaps a few others might. Playing, travelling and training takes up most of the time. He says the blokes from Northamptonshire are a good group of guys and is enjoying the county scene thus far. B-Mac is coming up to see Nicho and the two Stags are going to have a round of golf at some stage.
Matt Makepeace has started a little bit of trouble it would seem in Skeg Vegas. 1 girl wants marriage, another to move in with him and 2 stalkers. In terms of cricket he has scored 12, 43, and 85 and his team is on top of the table with a maximum of 60 points.
That's all the news thus far from the UK.
Now back home to Sydney.
I received an email from the esteemed Richie Paul entitled "Where have you been all my life". Such a lovable man is Richie. He sent me two photos, both of him and his antics of ANZAC day. Whilst miners Todd, and Russel where trapped in Tasmania, not the mine, Tasmania, RP started the day with Yum Cha in Chinatown at 10am for a few beers then finished up in Surrey Hills for some two up, which judging by the photo, he won a poor mans fortune.
Whilst at the Green Gate on Saturday night I was fortunate enough to run into Slammin' Sammy Hinton. Hint-Dog was getting into the spirit of the upcoming Soccer World Cup by wearing some less than flattering "Kappa"
clothing. Jimmy Hosking was also present. Such a gorgeous man is Hosking.
Every time I look into his eyes, it's like receiving a warm hug. Ahhhhhhh'..
Thank you to everyone who sent me emails from the previous, and original 'Missy's Mail'. If anyone from the Gordon community wants to let me know what they are up to in the off season, or the greater world if they want to give some dirt on a player overseas then please, feel free to drop me a line at email@example.com
As for myself, I received a nasty bout of alcohol poisoning last weekend after a day that started watching rugby at St. Ives and a night that ended at Alberts at 3:30.
On that note I'll sign off.
The 2005/06 season had many highlights, however one that wasn't documented was the arrival of a new report writer in Ian Higgins. Ian's early attempts to ruffle the feathers of stalwart Richard Stobo were well reveived by Gordon supporters. Ian's reports became legendary with his quick wit and sometimes direct statements that rarely missed the mark (except for one report on the condition of the Chatswood Oval pitch).
With a long off season ahead of us, we needed s spark to keep us going during our break and Ian has kindly agreed to write a regular column on the wherebaouts and activities of Gordon players both overseas and at home.
The column is called Missy's mail and Ian's first release is below.
Missy's Mail No.1
Hello my dearly beloved friends, followers, and fanatics. It has been oh so long since we last had a chance to catch up. Fortunately the extent of the regular column under the moniker of "Missy's Mail" will give those of you who truly care what the current club members are up to in the off season.
There is no escape from the Media Machine, and frenzy that will surround Missy's Mail. Hold onto your hats.
First of all we travel overseas to see what the Gordon Representatives are doing. It would appear very little. How ironic. I sent an email to all of the players overseas a week or so ago. So far Nicholson and McDonald have replied. The latter inviting me to have a round of 18 and a drink. The logistics of the invitation make the mind boggle. I thought long and hard about McDonald, and I came to the conclusion that he resembles a grown up Macaulay Culkin. I have been to his Wollstonecraft residence, and I would never leave him Home Alone.
Matt Nicholson on the other hand is settling in well, and everything should be running smoothly over in Northamptonshire.
Rod 'Rocket' Hokin has the best news of all however. He has "made an instant impression for Bovey Tracey in his debut game against Exmouth by hitting an unbeaten century in a seven-wicket warm-up win." Well done Rocket.
Ed Howitt Jnr had originally intended to head over but backed down at what must have been the final minute. However he is playing some cricket in a local winter league alongside Matt Michael, James Packman, Brett Rosen, Ahmed Iqbal, Iqbal Ahmed, and a few West Pymble associates. When I asked one participant if it was a bit of fun or quite serious; I was replied with "Well' Packers opened the bowling, Cuppy was keeping, and I opened the batting." Apparently they made a rule, if your delivery was hit for a maximum of six runs, the bowler had to fetch it. Hoppa did plenty of walking. Anyway the team won by 7 runs.
(Hoppa chasing a six)
Club Captain and adviser to all things love has now made his voyage across the waters of the world and touched down in the UK. After knowing about his departure date for some months, JOF decided to apply for his working VISA 13 minutes before his plane was due to leave the tarmac. Suffice to say he was in the country a little longer than first planned. I wasn't able to attend any of Pumps' 47 farewells as I was tied up on all occasions.
Unfortunately this is the only news I have to date of the performances of our overseas Stags. Perhaps in the next edition we can have news from Evans, Livermore, O'Neill Fuller, and Makepiece.
As for the Stags still in the country, well, not a lot to report on that either. I have run into Richie Paul on two occasions since he shocked the cricketing community and decided to hang up the spikes. The first time I was at Alberts Corner Bar in North Sydney. It was 1:45am. I was caught up in the hysteria of a Rugby night. I saw Richie talking to a young female. I had a quick word with Richie. Well it seemed like a quick word, but before I knew it the bar was closing, so it must have been close to an hour or something.
(Richie Paul prior to his retirement)
I'd like to report something from that evening, but I have no recollection of anything past 4 O'clock that afternoon. The second occasion I saw R.P. was at Balmoral oval, the Mosman Whales Homestead. He was watching his room mate, (or room mate's mate) play rugby, and I was there watching my beloved Knox Old Boys go round. I first saw Ritchie at midday and had a good chat with him. I saw him later at around 5. Well, he was just enjoying the rugby I suppose.
Stuart Slocombe or "Choppy" as he is affectionately known will be overseas as we speak in Samoa. "The Dentist" as he is less affectionately known is promoting cricket in Samoa. If anyone was to promote the ins and outs of cricket, it would be Slocombe. He will even be privileged to a dinner with the King of Samoa. Let's hope his etiquette is just as good as it is at the GreenGate.
The Moth, or "Tim Packman" as he is affectionately known spent the previous month, April, overseas in the UK. I have absolutely no idea what he was doing over there. But he was there. He is returning just in time to kick off the beach sessions down at curly.
(The moth...what was he doing in the UK?)
Dave Storey is still playing a bit of cricket for the I.Z.'s, and offered me the opportunity to play for the esteemed club. I had to decline due to my father's 70th birthday celebrations colliding on the same date. Dave has been working hard as he has only recently started his new job. I intend to catch up with Stores soon.
Leon Gulaptis, everybody's favourite extra, has officially turned 21 and celebrated the event at his home in Maclean. Congratulations to Gulappa. And of course to Ed Zelma who tied the knot a little while ago. Higgins was also able to tie the knot, however it was less of a surprise to see Higgins tie his shoe than see Zelma fall happily into wedlock. Congratulations Ed.
As for every other man at the club, I have unfortunately lost touch with.
Perhaps if they would like to let the rest of the club to know what they are and have been doing then they can drop me a line. So please, send your fan-mail, hate-mail, and advertisements for Penis-Enlargement Pills to Higgins_I@hotmail.com
That's the news of the world thus far. Stay tuned for the next instalment of Missy's Mail, hopefully I will be able to report more antics of Stags as they come to hand.