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Second Grade Match Reports 16/17

The Second Grade team plays for The Albert Cup.

All of the lower grades generally contain a number of experienced players and young higher grade aspirants. Points for all wins go to the club championship.

For the Second grade schedule go to Fixtures

Second Grade match reports for 2016/17 season are provided below:



2nd Grade vs Mosman - Round 10 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Mosman - Round 10 - 2016/17

After a shaky victory to the Julio’s, some cricket was actually played…

The Stags won the toss and bowled under sultry skies. They started well but a number of dropped catches gave Mosman a massive reprieve. 

Chad Soper remained not out at the end of the innings. 1st Grade for this International in Round 11 

The score rose steadily as more catches were shelled. Anand Verma finally took a brace, as did Chad Soper, as Mosman finished on 5-246 from their 50 overs.

What could have been! But wasn’t.

Gordon started steadily but then the top order collapsed with only Scott O’Brien of the top five batsmen making any real contribution.

Corbin Edgar and Chad Soper then added some respectability with a good partnership but when Corbin was out for a swashbuckling 73, the end was nigh.

All out for 208 with Chad remaining 27*. A disappointing result but I know the lads have had a good week of training and are ready to take on the Bears with animosity. 

Go the Stags.

Max Papworth

2nd Grade vs Parramatta - Round 9 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Parramatta - Round 9 - 2016/17

The Christmas break is always an interesting one for the Stags. A break to reflect on your performances to date, as well as to contemplate how much practice will be executed amongst your two weeks off. 

More often than not, your training routine will be dictated by season statistics to date. Admittedly, you arrive at the same outcome. Whether performing well or badly, 90% of us will have 0 throw downs, 0 net sessions, and will arrive at the first game of January with whites still compounding mould and dirt from pre Christmas. 

Josh Doyle picks up one of his three wickets.

This training regime is not arrived at purposefully however, at least a collection of us have the best intention to maintain at least some form of training to avoid forgetting how to bat or bowl in the 2 weeks we have off. Some players even initiate backyard cricketing activity as a “bit of fun”, when in actual fact it is most certainly for personal reassurance that at least some form of practice has been done.

This does bode the question of what the other 10% do; admittedly the author is most certainly in this category. The Christmas break training scaffold for this 10% is broken down into 2 categories – Skills and Game Analysis. Skills are obvious, batting bowling and fielding. 

Throw downs with Dad every morning at 7am for an hour. Why else would he take off time over Christmas? It certainly isn’t to spend more time around the house. 

Bowling happens at 8, utilising hula-hoops, marking cones and a cardboard cut out of either Dan Stickland or Axel Cahlin, rotating every day. Annoyingly, Axel’s cut out still goes at a run a ball and averages 50 odd. 

Chad showed some resistance down the order.

After skills, it is time to get home just before the first ball of the test starts. You must ensure your laptop has full charge to ensure you don’t lose power whilst updating your excel spreadsheet analysis of the days play. 

Singles, Boundaries, misfields you name it. Every ball is documented and compiled into a knowledge bank, to help you when facing Vikrant first training session back. 

Once the test is over, there is an hour in which you can hit yourself high catches before the big bash starts, ensure your laptop is put back on charge. Detailed analysis of the big bash in a similar fashion to your daytime shift has to occur to improve your database; you can never have too much information. 

Once the big bash finishes you can then go back to sleep to recover for tomorrow’s training schedule. The ratio of work to rest is 7 days a week, obviously. However on Christmas morning it is slightly altered, where the morning skills sessions are doubled in duration to provide an excuse to miss Christmas lunch. 

It is important to recognise that this training regime obviously leads to instant success, which makes the first game in January extremely exciting for us 10%.

Anyway, 2nd grade arrived at Old Kings Oval to see extremely flat wicket, with a slightly damp popping crease. It is fair to say a start on time was hopeful. However this didn’t eventuate. 

Dan Stickland was pinpoint as usual.

After about 3 games of warm up soccer where the nerds took the cake 10-0 on aggregate thanks to Anand Verma’s heroics, we finally tossed and decided to bowl. It was unfortunate that AV had exerted all of his energy in the warm up and decided to take a day of leave. Luckily we called the Orchard just in time, and told them to cut Prelly off and chuck him in an Uber to Parramatta, crisis averted.

It is fair to say that everyone bowled well. Chad was unlucky not to get a wicket, however he certainly applied pressure, which enabled J Doyle to burgle 3 wickets opening the bowling. 2 wickets each to Stickland, Baker and Obrien saw Parramatta bowled out for 206. Take out old mates 112, which was an exceptional show of power hitting, and the Stags Bowlers had done a good job.

Unfortunately the batting never hit its straps. Too many starts without any large scores is hopefully an unusual story for the 2s batting line up. It is important to capitalise on our strong table position to ensure a run for finals is made with plenty of momentum.

Writing a match report when we don’t come away with the points isn’t very fun, especially when my training regime didn’t pay dividends. I am still trying to figure out why. If you think my holiday program needs adjusting please let me know. Maybe two hits a day would have made a difference???

Reagan Klemt

2nd Grade vs Sutherland - Round 8 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Sutherland - Round 8 - 2016/17

With persistent rain during the week it was looking unlikely the stags would be able to play to make amends form last week’s performance. Fortunately a bright and sunny day was forecasted. 

It was an emotional morning as Will Phillips was to turn out for the “Julios” for one last momentous moment. As ever he was fired up and put on a stellar performance to continue the run of form against the “nerds” that began last week. However it was to no avail as the result was a boring draw.

Despite the dry pitch and outfield there was one small wet patch on the square, delaying the start of our match by an hour. When play finally began the stags started perfectly with Dom and Scott “Scooty” Obrien running extremely well and putting away the bad balls. 

It needs to be noted how quick Dom is running between the wickets turning 1’s into 2’s and 2’s into 3’s it is no wonder he trains twice a day at F45 gym. After what was looking to be a very big partnership Scotty was out bringing Max Papworth to the crease. 

Another tidy partnership made a big score start to look likely. Max fell looking to increase the run rate which bough Will “King Julio” Phillips to the crease for his final innings. He started where Max left off rotating the strike and using lap sweeps to good effect against their spinners. With wickets in hand and the score ticking over at a comfortable rate Max Newman saw an opportunity for him to play an aggressive innings that would push the total past the par 270 mark we established before the innings that would bat them out of the game. 

When Will departed for a well-made 27, Max was attacking from the word go punishing the spinners by picking the gaps in a very calculated manner. 

Dom’s dismissal will go down as one of the more comical we will see all season. Attempting to return from dancing down the wicket Dom looked like he had been shot in the hammy. Fortunately it was just a cramp and with assistance from the opposition players Dom was walking off the pitch having made an excellent 79. 

Another quick wicket bought Josh Doyle to the crease feeling as fresh as ever from his 10th game of cricket in two weeks. Max and Josh could not have put a foot wrong both playing aggressively. 

A shout out has to be made for Josh’s six over fine leg where he played an incredible scoop shot. Max and josh were there at the end with 75 (52 balls) and 37 (33 balls) respectively giving us the final score of 290.
The Stags with the thought of a Christmas party in the approaching hours were determined to finish the job early. We couldn’t have asked for a better start with Josh and Sticko applying the pressure and picking up wickets. 

Doyley was the first to take a wicket then Stickland followed suit straight after. It seemed from here the flood gates were to be open that not even Sutherland's new coach Sparky could prevent. 

The spinners in Scott and Anand bowled beautifully both bowling with accuracy. It can be seen how tight they bowled with 4 and 6 maidens by Anand and Scott respectively. 

From here the game seemed to put on the breaks as they played very defensively. 

William “I have 7 first class wickets” Phillips was given one last chance for a Staggies wicket. It would have been the case if yours truly didn’t drop a dolly. The Sutherland boys continued to play negative cricket seemingly blocking it out for a draw. 

This is when Cameron “6 pack in progress” New and Sticks were bought into the attack. Stickland took two very quickly with brilliant attacking the stumps bowling. Cam after a rocky start got into a groove and started to bowl some decent rocks. 

Cam picked up the final wicket and fittingly it was Will who took the catch with a screamer in the deep. Sutherland were all out for 126 which shows the absolute dominance Gordon displayed over the opponents. 

A much improved team effort from the week before and a lot of positives to be taken into the New Year break.

Corbin Edgar

2nd Grade vs Penrith - Round 7 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Penrith - Round 7 - 2016/17

The second grade heroes arrived at Chatswood under familiar circumstances, in the midst of Sam “Stinky” Baker’s gaseous emissions. 

There were several key changes to the team with Corbin Edgar filling in for the absent territory cricketer Josh Doyle, Nick “Big Nuts” Miller and Anand “NaNa” Verma revitalising the bowling attack and bowling all-rounder Shayne Lin coming in for Regean Klemt in Day 2.

Will Phillips sequence seems to be in order.  

Of course this meant monumental shifts in power as the “Julios” and “Nerds” infamous football match began to draw large crowds on the Chatswood Hill, thankfully their Tai-Chi Sword celebrations resulted in zero injuries. 

The “Nerds” developed some momentum over the course of game as the “Julios” new recruits Corbin and Big Nuts failed to close down the fast movements of Anand on and off the ball. Will “Sweet Chilli Philli” Phillips as usual was rambunctious on the field and was tightly double marked for obvious reasons. The “Nerds” well-rehearsed ‘zonal’ defence strategy along with Scotty O’Brien’s park the bus mentality kept the Julio’s scoreless. 

Quick fire counter attack goals to Sambo Baker and Dan Stickers secured a once again vital win for the “Nerds”. Clearly the “Julio’s” flamboyant and debatably ‘loose’ playing style will need serious attention over the coming weeks.

Anand and Stickers happily poured themselves a celebratory cuppa as skip Max Newman won the toss and choose to bat on a flat Chatswood wicket. Like every week the words “it’ll do abit early” were muttered (©The Grade Cricketer) however we were quietly confident with a solid batting performance the previous round. 

The day didn’t go to plan and was ominously alluded to by Cam “Mango’s” New who left one on middle in the second over. Regular wickets fell and the Stags couldn’t put together a partnership. That is until Corbin and Anand came together, saving the Stags and pushing them up to 180. 

Corbs punished the bowlers in his quick-fire 80, particularly against the spinners. Will Phillips reminded everyone how special he is by refusing to bat without some gum, thankfully old Dom “Spectrum” Thomson was able to supply the goods after a quick jog to Woolies. However there wasn’t much else to smile about. 

In the field our bowlers toiled hard on an absolute flatty in the afternoon with little success or luck. A classic day of grade cricket (©Will Phillips) where the batsman cashed in after tea and the runs came easy. Finishing on 2-150 odd. 

A highlight was probably some dubious under the lid tactics by Max Newman that gave Dom Thomson a few bruises from close proximity, cheers Anand for that half tracker.

An unfamiliar sight with Shayne Lin being put to good use! 

When Day 2 rolled round the batsman dusted off the total and a dead-rubber game became apparent as neither team were going to bowl each other out again. 

Shayne Lin was the pick of the bowlers with a couple of dot balls and above average sledging. Sweet Chilli Philli also took a few nice snares in the field that helped lift the team on a long day. 

The Stags got another bat however the skippers called the game at tea, a disappointing day for the heroes. 

The highlight of the day was clearly the boozy post match soccer game. Pints of Asahi brought up more emotion then usual between the “Julios” and “Nerds” and a 10 minute ‘kick’ had suddenly turned into an hour long cage match. The “Julios” had been struggling recently and were looking for some additional fire power. 

This came in the form of a 9 yr old local who had rolled up to Chatswood for the day with a box of Dominoes pizza and a scooter. Clearly an avid supporter of the Stags and more precisely the “Julios”. Whilst we never got his name, we quickly landed on ‘Reg’ and it stuck. We had a game on our hands. The game was abit hazier than usual – dehydration and beers, name a more iconic duo – however it was fiercely locked at 2-2 when “next goal wins” was uttered. The “Nerds” defence was caught napping, yes I know how uncharacteristic, and Big Nuts slotted one home to give the “Julios” victory. 

Overall disappointment for the Stags as one session in Day 1 cost us the match however we showed good fight and no need for alarm bells. A better batting performance will be necessary and we’re confident we can roll into Christmas with a big win next week.

Dom "Webmaster" Thomson

2nd Grade vs Sydney University - Round 6 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Sydney University - Round 6 - 2016/17

On Day 1 the Gordon boys arrived at a flat Sydney University Oval for their round 6 fixture. The match was an important one as the boys unfortunately lost the previous round to a strong St George side. With the boys wanting to make amends for the previous round we knew we would have to execute all three disciplines well coming up against an always strong Sydney University opponent.

The weekly pre match football was very competitive as it always is with the top six taking on the bottom five. The top order bats have been winning most weeks, however, this week the bowlers managed to keep it to a well earned hard fought draw. Good stuff bottom five!

Scotty O'Brien in fine form!

Now to the cricket! 

Captain Max Newman won the toss and elected to bat on a typical flat Sydney Uni wicket with openers Cameron New and Scott O’brien putting on 40 for the first wicket. The boys played the opposition opening bowlers well, leaving many deliveries outside off stump and making the bowlers bowl to them. 

The boys had to work hard for their runs as the usual quick outfield wasn’t so quick with balls stopping just short of the fence numerous times, with many 2’s and 3’s being run. Unfortunately Newy was bowled after looking good for his 14. I’m quite sure a big score is right around the corner for Cameron as he has been looking better and better each week I have seen him bat. Josh Doyle came and went for 9 unfortunately getting ‘Burnsed’ caught down the leg side. 

Regan Klemt and Scott O’brien then steadied the ship to get the Stags’ to lunch at 2-70. During the first session Scott did a wonderful job negotiating the Uni bowlers and put the bad balls away. He brought up his fifth fifty of the season and gave his customary thumbs up to the boys. Well done Scott! 

Mr Dan Smithers playing fluently all over the ground.

Unfortunately early in the second session Scott got a peach of a delivery that bounced steeply on a length which he edged through to the keeper for a well compiled 56. Regan also unfortunately edged a ball to their 1st slip who took a good catch. If only he’d managed to nick it to their second slip who was having a nightmare of a day putting down several chances! 

This left the boys in a dangerous position with the score placed at 4-100. 

The Stags needed it’s all-rounders to stand up and dig us out of a hole and that’s exactly what Dan Smith and Will Phillips did putting on 75 for the fourth wicket. They both batted patiently for most of the second session as well as both being aggressive towards their young spinner.

Will Phillips scored his highest score of the season so far, unfortunately hitting a full toss straight to the fielder for 40. After tea, Thompson came and went, and the set batsman Smith nicked off to the first slip for a classy 44. Skipper Max Newman and our PNG all- rounder Chad Soper dug us out of another hole and helped us post the respectable total of 270 at the end of the day. They batted for most of the final session putting on 54 with Max producing a stubborn captain’s knock of 39 and Chad making 31 respectively. 

Day 2 brought with it newly formed pre match soccer teams changed; ‘the nerds’ vs ‘the julios’ it was always going to be a competitive match. Skipper Max Newman was the leader of ‘the nerds’ and Will Phillips was appointed captain of ‘the julios’ for his overall good looking appearance and his ability to ‘alpha’ the rest of us on the soccer field. However, ‘the nerds’ stuck it to their superiors and won quite comfortably 3-1! Well done nerds!

Chad Soper was well and truly unchained for the Stags.

We had a game plan to bowl good areas and to be patient. Dan Smith (0-23 off 12) and Chad Soper (1-36 off 14) opened up and bowled good channels with both bowlers unfortunately having chances go down in the slips. This has been a problem area for us so far this season and will no doubt be looking to improve it as the season progresses. 

Smith and Soper bowled without luck as the students’ batsmen batted very patiently defending and leaving lots of deliveries. They were starting to settle into a nice partnership and their shots were racing along the quicker outfield on day two. 

Dan ‘Mr Reliable’ Stickland (2-41 off 17) was brought into the attack and had success again quite quickly as their opener managed to nick one behind to Newman. The students’ experienced batsman Hay and Miller put on 63 for the second wicket before the students had a collapse to go from being 1-21 to 5-107. 

This collapse was hugely thanks to Regan ‘Faf’ Klemt, or ‘Faf du Reeg’ who had the important task of working on the ball all day to make sure our bowlers could utilise the important skill of reverse swing. The Stags then were able to apply lots of pressure by bowling in tight areas and minimise the student’s scoring opportunities. 

Scott O’Brien (2-38 off 14.1) was able to control an end with his much improved leg-spin, whilst we attacked at the other end with the quicks. This enabled us to get the remaining wickets comfortably and bowl a strong Sydney University side out for 196.

Dan Stickland struggles to put a foot wrong this season, keep it going!

Gordon taking a well earned 6 points from the game gets our season back in the right direction after our loss the previous round, winning 5 out of 6 matches thus far this season. 

The boys are really gelling together as a group and want to win games of cricket together but also enjoy each other’s success. 

Next round, we take on the always competitive Penrith at home at Chatswood. 

If we aim to produce solid performances like we have so far this season I have no doubt we can beat any team in the competition and give it a red hot crack of playing finals cricket.

Sam Baker

2nd Grade vs St George - Round 5 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs St George - Round 5 - 2016/17

As we arrived at the pristine Hurstville Oval, nerves and excitement had spread throughout the changeroom. Rumour was that our ferocious skipper had just made the biggest decision in his captaincy career.

He changed the teams in warm up football to The Top 6 vs The Bottom 5. 

Here's a photo of Dan Stickland to help you through the 'football chat', which is as trendy as Booth's manbun 

The decision was a controversial one, but all players agreed it was made solely on the prospect of possibly the best football combination the world has ever seen, in Phillips and Doyle.

The pair didn’t take long to set the world alight, as straight from the shin-off they were teaming up for consecutive goals before the Bottom 5 had even taken a breath. As word got around the Hurstville locals, the crowd grew in hundreds and were in complete awe of the skills of these two athletes. 

They continued to take the mickey as the Top 6’s score progressed into double and then into triple figures, while keeping a remarkable clean sheet over the 10 minute match.

Scott O'Brien takes 5 Saints wickets to set up the first innings chase 

Will “Travis Head” Phillips was interviewed at the end of the match, and in his arrogant English accent was quoted in saying that the match was “A simple training run against blokes who have 2 left feet”. The Bottom 5 was left embarrassed and chose not to comment on the drubbing. 

In the cricket, “Scooby” O’Brien took an excellent and well deserved 5 wicket haul, “DT” Thomson toughed out a 29* in the first innings while the rest of us were poor.

Sam Baker and Dan Smith combine to provide a formidable 2nd Grade attack 

Chad “Sloper” Soper was welcomed back to a first baller and a brilliant spell of bowling all in the morning of Day 2.

We lost, which sucked. Particularly given St George only made 165 first time around.

Our second innings wasn’t much better. However, we have all resolved to take it up to the Students next round.

Remember kids who rules, O’Doyle Rules

Josh Doyle

2nd Grade vs Bankstown - Round 4 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Bankstown - Round 4 - 2016/17

‘Creativity is contagious. Pass it on’. Einstein’s words echoed around the team huddle on a damp spring morning in Sydney’s leafy North Shore.

If you assumed that by ’team’ I meant the 11 members of second grade, you were incorrect. These were, in fact, the words uttered by the top five ‘legends’ as named by last week’s match reporter, Dan Stickland, one of the few words he didn’t use the synonym tool on. Sorry Dan, but I’m going to rename the top five ‘the galácticos’.

In case you weren’t aware the galácticos (Spanish for galactics or superstars) were expensive, world-famous Real Madrid football players recruited during the "galácticos" policy pursued during Florentino Pérez's presidency at Real Madrid in the early to mid 2000s. I contacted my English mate Banksy to make up what a modern day gálacticos side would look like and you can see below what he came up with. The bottom six have the nickname ‘the jerks’. You can have that one, Dan.

I won’t bore you with the full details of the football match on day one, people are occupied with work, uni or school and don’t need to know about me scoring five over the two weekends.

Game 1:

Galacticos 6 Jerks 4

Game 2:

Galacticos 2 Jerks 1

Player Ratings (football obviously)


Scott O’Brien 9
What was Hayden without Langer? Lennon without McCartney? Richie without Alex? Nothing. What would the gálactico’s defence be like without O’Brien? Work it out.

Cam New 7.5
Not a natural but sport is 90% mental.

Will Phillips 7
Modesty is the best policy when writing a match report.

Reagan Klemt 9
Recovered from getting skinned by Newman in week one to return with an imperious, commanding performance. Brings the ball each week.

Max Papworth 9.5
Covers ground a lot better than he covers the wickets at Killara. Imperious.


Josh Doyle 5
Bases his game on his beloved Central Coast Mariners, who are currently languishing in the lower echelons of the A League.

Max Newman 5.3
MOM in week one, a week in the courts seemed to affect his JUDGEment in week two.

Nick Miller 5.1
One of the most gifted players on the north shore. Great presence on the pitch, but I think that is his jawline, rather than his football, doing the talking.

Jack Skillbeck 5.2
Added enthusiasm to a lethargic Jerks side. Best player I’ve seen in a floppy.

Dan Stickland 5
Could do a job in England’s national team.

Sam Baker 5
Plays football with the coordination of a person who is celebrating their 18th birthday at The World Bar.

Whilst the Galactico's are undeniably clinical they are indeed a sight for sore eyes.


Day 1: Rain

Day 2:

An unprepared pitch meant that play kicked off at 12, leaving both teams a paltry 70 overs to force a result. Skipper Newman won the toss and stuck the Doggies in and they came out with bite. Bulldogs by name, Bulldogs by nature.

However, their promising start was soon neutered with tight bowling from Messrs O’Brien and Miller pulling back the Dog’s leash, 50/2. 
Enter Dan Stickland, who’s first ball, a genuine full bunger, was pouched at mid off by Skillbeck. 

A fortunate start from Stickland some may say, however, as my father James would say, “it’s better to be a lucky bowler than a good bowler”. 

Dan picks up four poles for his trouble.
Not to say that DS is not a good bowler, precisely the opposite in fact. This point was proven in an exceptional spell of attacking bowling, and by the end of his spell, he had four wickets to show for his hard work. 

Experienced pro Scott O’Brien also deservedly bagged a couple of wickets with a spell of controlled leg-spin, while Josh Doyle took two at the death. 

Doggies 173 all out.

Batting. It didn’t look good for the Stags at 5/86, although the top five looked good, that’s all that matters right? Wrong (Klemt, 2016). 

Back to Klemt in a moment. 

One of the five wickets to fall was Papworth, fresh off a hundred the week prior. Max was caught by a blinding catch at mid off after which, he was subject to a rather rude sending off from the Bankstown opening bowler. 

Their exchange went a little like this:

Bowler: “Oi mate, on your bike”

Max: “Mate, you know my Dad is an ex-Wallaby and is now a TV and Radio personality?”

Bowler: “Bloody oath, sorry mate”

Klemt (59*) and Newman (31) calmed proceedings down somewhat, putting together a crucial, match-defining partnership of 62. Reg played with great control, while Max continued his excellent start to the season with a counter-attacking knock. 

Regean carries the Stags home with another great show of controlled yet power hitting.
When Max was out, Miller came to the crease and with Reg, took the Stags home with 7 balls remaining. Four wins out of Four for second grade. Long may it continue.

Allez les Stags.


Sweet Chilli Willy Phillips

2nd Grade vs UNSW - Round 3 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs UNSW - Round 3 - 2016/17

Ah 2-day cricket. Proper cricket if you ask me, an absorbing format where the equanimity of the batsmen is delicately juxtaposed against the determination of the bowler.

A format where the game is not won or lost in an over but in a session or multitude thereof. How would the mighty stags fare in such a formidable challenge? Well read on, and I shall regale you of a mighty contest.

Max Papworth punches one down the ground with ease 

The setting, Killara Oval. Something of a fortress these last few weeks for the reserve graders. 

Whilst visitors have complained of the pitch and outfield, the staggies (much like the parents of a disappointing child) have embraced it and have set about being the best they can possibly be. 

Before I delve into the battle between willow and leather I must first report on a more hotly contested clash between the incredulously named “top 5 Legends” and the “bottom 6 Jerks.”

A mid-week transfer window sought to breathe new life into the match, with Max ‘he’ll get a mention or two’ Papworth coming into the Top 5 for Josh ‘UpUp’ Doyle who looked to solidify the bottom 6 midfield. 

The bottom 6 were determined from the outset, using a high press system not seen since the days of LVG at Old Trafford. This in-your-face attitude rattled the top 5, who resorted to speculative long balls that were dutifully cleaned up by Sam ‘Flu’ Baker. 

Reagan's long levers clubbed the Bee's around Killara 

Once in possession the bottom 6 looked to utilise the wings, ignoring the imaginary sideline marked by Reagan ‘might get another mention’ Klemt. Numerous crosses came close to breaking the deadlock, as did a scintillating interchange of passing between Miller and Stickland (think Jack Wilshere’s goal v Norwich 2013, minus the actual goal). 

A draw seemed inevitable, then “last play” was called and the top 5 sent all their numbers upfield in a vain attempt to take the game. 

A scramble and the ball was cleared out to Sam Baker, clean on goal with no one in front but suffering from an almighty case of the flu. Baker kept his composure and rolled it through for a well-deserved 1-0 victory for the bottom 6 jerks.

Now, to Cricket, the real reason you're here. 

Max Newman declared his intention to bat should he win the toss. The wicket had a covering of green grass, however the pitches true nature was underneath. Rock hard, no moisture whatsoever, must bat first. 

Well, true to form Newman lost the toss and the bowlers, observing the skippers body language from afar, starting warming up from their full runs. Incredibly the Bumble Bees captain decided to bowl first. An intriguing decision, but the right one? Read on. 

2/22 after 10 overs. “Yer probably the right decision” thought the Bumble Bees, “all right watch me” thought young Max Papworth and that is precisely what we did. 

For 221 minutes Max "the Smear" Papworth cut, swept and drove his way to a commanding and powerful 132.

An extremely entertaining 132 from Max!

His dismissal will be longed talked about, punching the ball whilst unsuccessfully reversing sweeping for the third time, I suspect the umpire was sick of seeing it and simply sent him on his way to think about what he did. 

The carnage however, was only starting as Reagan ‘sausage rolls FTB” Klemt then replicated Papworth’s innings. 

Finishing on 121* Reagans innings was chanceless and just reward for his continual hard work. The amassed total of 407/7 was simply sensational and the bumble bees were probably questioning their decision to even play cricket, let alone bowl first on an absolute flatty. Oh and Scott "Scooby" O'Brien got his 3rd successive half century.

A materclass from Reagan late in Day 1, finishing on 121*

As if the day did not belong to the Staggies already, Nick Miller decided to nip one back and leave UNSW 1/20 off 8 at the end of the day.

Day 2 saw one of the most dynamic and enthralling football matches ever seen in a cricket warm up. 

The Top 5 Legends were clearly rattled by the Bottom 6 Jerks victory last weekend and this was proven by their over-analysis and pre-match huddle to discuss tactics. 

The Bottom 6 Jerks maintained their in-your-face high press defence, forcing the Top 5 Legends to play the long ball, gifting away possession. However, the Bottom 6 Jerks struggled to capitalise on their possession, misfiring in front of goal. 

Suddenly out of nowhere Will "Wilbur" Phillips went on a barnstorming run beating multiple Jerks defenders and slotting it home for a 1-0 lead. Wilbur has had a sore back lately and while he’s not sure what it is or what caused I can safely say it’s from carrying the Top 5 Legends. 

This goal ignited the Bottom 6 and a swift counter attack from a corner levelled the match at 1-1. The game was on a precipice and the next goal would be vital. 

The Jerks once again sent the ball wide, Anand Verma released Stickland down the left wing and in his first contribution of the day Stickland put the ball on a platter for Newman to put the Jerks up 2-1. The game was not over though and time was still on the clock for the Top 5 to pull off the unthinkable. 

Scott "Scooby" O'Brien doing what he does best!

The Bottom 6 Jerks went into “Mourihno Mode” and parked the bus, booting the ball long and into the corners in a pessimistic attempt to wind down the clock. 

“Last Play” was called and the Top 5 held possession well. Somehow despite a shot being deflected for a corner ‘Last Play’ was continued to allow the Top 5 one last chance. 

A long, high and speculative ball found its way to the edge of the box and Will Phillips got a head on it. The ball, seemingly in slow motion, looped over the Jerks defenders and landed squarely in the middle of the goal. 2-2. 

Heartbreak for the Bottom 6 Jerks. Elation for the Top 5 Legends. Next week will be a fixture not to be missed.

We also played some cricket and the not out batsmen started well and cashed in as the bowlers looked to be full. 

Sam “healthy again” Baker got the ball rolling for the Stags, knocking back middle stump after consistently hitting some good areas. 

Dan “Cyclops” Stickland’s introduction into the attack saw one of the most fortunate drag-ons of his career, the batsman gloving the ball into leg stump as he looked to play to fine leg. To be fair though I did move it a little bit so it had some right to take a wicket. 

Sticker's smashing the stumps week in week out.

The UNSW batsmen weren’t going anywhere but then their number 4 decided to take Stickland on for a trio of boundaries, Stickers had the last laugh though uprooting middle stump and then letting the entire suburb of Killara know. Will Phillips then chimed in with a wicket of his own and at 5/104 things were looking great for the Stags.

The Staggies then wavered in their conquest, a couple of dropped chances and a partnership developed. 

Josh Doyle then rolled out some offies and took a neat caught-and-bowled, clutching it in his arms. “Lucky I’ve been doing them curls” said Josh in the huddle. It seems curls not only get girls but also partnership-breaking wickets (bowlers take note). 

Unfortunately, another partnership proved frustrating and the bowlers were perhaps guilty of bowling too inconsistently and wide of the stumps. Fortunately, the introduction of Scooby proved vital and the Stags entered tea only needing 3 more wickets. 

A quality tea (it’s gotta be one of the best teas in the entire comp) revitalised the bowlers and it took a measly 16 balls to capture the last 3 wickets. Scooby and Stickland ended with 3 each and the mighty reserve graders rolled on to remain undefeated. 

Also big ups to the 4th graders who came down to watch and supplying a case of beers to savour the win. 

Gordon 407/7dec (Papworth 132, Klemt 121*, O’Brien 74) def. UNSW 251 (O’Brien 3/25 Stickland 3/44)

Dan Stickland

2nd Grade vs Fairfield - Liverpool - Round 2 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Fairfield - Liverpool - Round 2 - 2016/17

In an attempt to build a stronger opening combination, Cameron New and Scott O’Brien have decided to start doing everything together. "We get coffee together, we train together and of course, we write match reports together." Can you tell who wrote what?

A sunny but blustery day greeted the Reserve Graders at Bert Oldfield Oval for their 2nd of six consecutive Saturdays at the venue. 

James "JK" Kennedy was thankfully more useful bowling than with his feet in the warm up football match

And it wasn’t long before the action started, with the hotly contested warmup football match between the Top 5 Legends and the Bottom 6 Jerks. The Jerks had some key inclusions with Dom “Spectrum” Thomson providing a much needed injection of pace and skill, and James “Peter Crouch” Kennedy proving to be a tall and lanky distraction for the Legends defenders. 

Their tactic of leaving the owner of the most lethal farts in Sydney Grade Cricket, Sammy “Protein Shake” Baker sweeping in defence also proved to be an important move. The Legends attackers really struggled to breathe in the gas cloud that had formed in the attacking half, let alone string any meaningful plays together. As a result the Jerks jumped out to early 2-0 lead. However, with the game reaching a conclusion, the New-O’Brien opening combination started gelling. With telepathic like synchronisation and fluency, chances were starting to fall to the Legends on the back of the pair’s dominant midfield display. 

And just at the call of “next goal wins!” the Legends converted pressure into goals with the very spreadable “Sweet Chili Philly” Will Phillips slipping in behind the Jerks' backline and applying the finish under immense pressure from the methane gas cloud that had formed. A 3-2 result under the “next goal wins” rule and 2 wins from 2 for the Legends this season.

Warmup football rivalries would have to be put on ice until next week however, as the Staggies looked to continue to build upon their cricketing form after a strong victory over Blacktown in Round 1. 

Max “Carters” Newman failed at his one job once again and the Lions chose to bat first on rock hard Killara wicket. Our fearless leader informed us that he has now lost 12 tosses in a row stretching back to 2014/15 and may be looking for a replacement coin tosser in the coming weeks if his coin flipping exercises and weights program doesn’t pay dividends by next round.

The inclusion of James “Bruce Reid” Kennedy looked to be a big gain early on as he proceeded to send the new ball perilously close to the outside edge on numerous occasions. Bruce was ably supported by Dan “Fingers” Stickland, who bowled with great consistency to keep the scoring rate low.

Bruce was replaced with Reagan “The Zone” Klemt and although The Zone ironically struggled to hit his zones, he was able to draw a false shot for the first wicket. Some excellent bowling from Sam "Protein Shake" Baker and Anand “The Guru” Verma saw many chances created and even though a couple were spurned by the Stags fieldsmen, this tight bowling soon resulted in wickets. 

Sticky charging in and reliably hitting his line and length

The Guru finished up with 2 wickets including an LBW that was so plumb it saw the batsman walk before a very dissatisfied umpire even had the chance to send him on his way. Some more good bowling in the middle to late overs from the “part-timers” (Cricinfo reliably informs us that Sweet Chili Philly has a better First Class bowling average than Mason Crane #justsayin kept the scoring rate down and some excellent fielding from Josh “Kenny G” Doyle created a timely run out. 

Restricting Fairfield to around 200 was definitely on the cards heading into the last few overs, but unfortunately a little loose bowling and some good batting from the Lions opener who batted through the innings saw the total creep up to 230. 

Not the result we were looking for but still an under par score and a very gettable target. 

Special mention to Bruce who bowled expertly at the death and even correctly predicted “I’ve got a feeling this guy is going to try and ramp me this over”. Try the batsman did, but the result? Stumps everywhere!

Will Phillips trying to prove that some part-timers do have wheels

After a quick rest and some of Killara East local store’s finest sandwiches, it was on to the task at hand.

“Yeah that first ball was a bit silly. Just threw my hands at it, but man did I guts it.” And so it was - and so it would be for the next 70 runs of Scott O’Brien’s classy innings. 

Carrying on from his form in the previous match, "Scooby" notched up “a proper batsman’s knock” of 74 to take the Gordon Stags towards their second win in as many weeks. Some say the deadliest of weapons imbibe the characteristics of their victims, and after polishing off the Warriors and the Lions, one wonders what might lay in store for next weeks clash with UNSW….hopefully nothing bumblebee related. 

In any case, as the immortal words of John Donne remind us, “No man is an island”, and this is certainly true for the Gordon batting innings. Scott’s performance was supported brilliantly by a number of batters who were content to let the ebb and flow of the game roll like the very best of a Led Zeppelin album. 

Bang! Scott launches a superb straight six onto the tennis courts at Killara

Fresh from his week-long sobriety pledge, Reagan “dark hair, long neck” Klemt (39) gave No Quarter to the Lion’s attack, leaving them a little Dazed and Confused as he showcased his T20 credentials. Reagy punished the bowlers every time they missed their lengths, and worked the singles well until he was finally undone trying to launch a straight one up to the Mothership. A great innings to watch, and good signs for the future. 

Unfortunately, it wasn’t always in the Stags favour. "Groundskeeper Willy" Phillips copped one he'll go to his grave claiming was an absolute howler of a decision,  strangling one down the leg side off his obliques for a golden (don’t worry, we’ve already alerted the Primary Club and they’re expecting your donation post haste). New man Dom “I’ve never seen a spinner I didn’t charge” Thomson, was fired shaping one beautifully onto his front pad after making an excellent start to his career in the Reserve Grade. 

In spite of this, and some naggingly tidy bowling during the middle stages of the innings from the Lions’ medium pacers, Gordon rolled on towards victory thanks to patient batting by Josh Doyle (35) and Max “Ryan Carter’s younger brother” Newman (34*). 

Josh holds the innings together while Scott and Reagan go on the attack

It was only fitting that our fearless leader should finish the game off by plundering one over the cow corner boundary, ensuring that the side's fresh faces were able to practice their “Get Fah you Bah’s” in true Gordon style.

Special mentions also to Anand Verma for joining the Kookaburra club and retiring that tired old paling. Runs to come!

Another great result for the 2nd graders, with more room to improve as the season progresses. A good mix of young talent and experience which have meshed well so far. 

Well done to all Stags for a fantastic start to the season – 10/12 wins is a hell of a way to enter the 2-day arena with some confidence as well take on UNSW. Let’s push for another big round and more wins to celebrate down at The Orchard. 

Up the Stags…and the mighty Team Turpsmen

Gordon 7/233 (48.0) def Fairfield-Liverpool 8/230 (50.0)

Scott O'Brien and Cam New

2nd Grade vs Blacktown - Round 1 - 2016/17

2nd Grade vs Blacktown - Round 1 - 2016/17

The Gordon 2nd Graders turned up at Killara Oval on Saturday morning looking to continue some of the good form the boys enjoyed towards the end of last season. Fresh in his return to captaincy of the side, Max Newman put the boys through their paces early and after the top order collected first points of the day in the football – we began our assault on the Warriors.

Sam Baker steaming in for the Staggies

Despite only having returned to the country in the previous week, Matt Junk (recipient of a well-deserved promotion to the top Grade for this week’s clash with Fairfield-Liverpool) with the help of Chad Soper (1-18 off 6.3) got the boys off to a tight start; restricting the opposition to 2-27 off 14 after being 0-22 off their first 7.

Excellent bowling from Dan Stickland (1-21 off 8) and new stag Sammy Baker (3-25 off 8) added to the Warrior’s woes and things were looking up. 

An unlucky denial of a leg-side caught behind ignited a middle order resurgence which saw Blacktown push their total from 5-82, past the 100 and towards a respectable score at Killara.

Scooby-doo O'Brien murders one over mid-off!

Not to be the only international player left out of the action, Will Philips chipped in with an invaluable spell of 2-10 off his 3 overs to dismiss danger man Dean Crawford and help cap the warriors to a modest 183 inside 50 overs. An excellent result for the 2nd Graders and one that we will be looking to back up again this weekend.

A quick start to the Gordon innings was required to put the result beyond doubt and Scott O’Brien went about continuing his trial form by absolute blasting the Warriors pace attack to all part of the ground. Nobody was safe from his bladed willow and his 63 provided the perfect foundation for the innings to come and has no doubt secured his position opening in the shorter forms of the game till father time hangs up the boots….

Good signs early on in the season for import Will Phillips

Excellent contributions from Will Philips (33) and Chad Soper, ably supported by Max Newman and Josh Doyle saw the boys home comfortably in a game where the scorecard didn’t quite do justice to how soundly the opposition were outmatched.

A good starting point for the Reserve Graders and something to build upon in the weeks to come at Killara before Chatswood becomes available and the soothing sounds of electro Thai Chi become synonymous with Saturdays in Chatty once more.

Cam “Mango” New


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