Oh-so-close to a broom in his first full round as President, Nic Brian left the blazer in the locker and the card in the wallet on Saturday night, but it wouldn’t stop the Students celebrating what was – on the whole – a very successful outing on the weekend.
Premier cricket legend has it that when you see a team’s mascot at their home ground (a Magpie against Camberwell, a swan against Casey, a fighter jet against Essendon… etc.) said team is destined for success. So when a cohort of first years walked around the Main in search of a Saturday morning bacon sandwich, Uni got an added spring in their step.
In a twist that left everyone a bit shocked, Beefy turned up sober and McKenna won the toss. Uni bowled first and it was King and Wombat who combined for the first. A proud pairing. From there, the spinners got into their work. Something of a name-dropping exercise, Hatzoglou, Warren and Ahmed ripped through the pouch of the kangaroos; Slug the standout with 4/29 from his ten. A fine advertisement for servo hot food. Elsewhere, debutant Max Hatzoglou took what has been described as the best catch of all time; having run under and around a high ball, he threw himself backwards to claim a one-hander. “Good player that Hatzaloooo.”
Set 186 for Victory, it was Greenvale who were hopping mad at the start of the second innings; the Students in strife at 3/30. Enter, the vortex. More specifically, enter 11 Roos into the Yak Vortex. Evidently Andrej woke up on Saturday morning – meaning he was immediately on 60 no. Grabbing the game by the scruff of the neck, he and Hatzoglou M, combined for just shy of one hundred to Give Uni the upper hand.
Maxy Hatz blasted 58 at a run-a-ball on a wicket that no one else could keep pace. A fine innings under a sizable amount of pressure, it will also see him donate close to $300 to FightMND in honour of his late grandfather; Max will be chipping in $5 for every run he scores this year – and based on his early season form, he’ll need to break some big stories in the coming months to keep up… To donate to Max’s cause, jump on his GoFundMe HERE
Such was Fawad’s confidence in the boys, that he went home with 30 runs to get. Yes you read that correctly, unfortunately Tommy Hilfiger only schedule their ambassador shoots on a Saturday afternoon. Anyway, Bucket Buckets also chipped in with 24 to get the boys home, Uni claiming victory with nine overs to go.
Roo Park, the third. Anyone pack their equestrian kit? Rolfsy couldn’t fathom a world beyond the end of the Thomastown Rattler, but he soon found it in the portable dressing room.
Jezza Peacock won his first coin flip as skipper and as Danny Morrison would advise, he chose to “swing a couple.” Incidentally, it was the Greenvale opener who actually came out swinging, like a cowboy (perhaps he was there for equestrian?). In any case, it was a brief stay, as TJ and Squid combined to crack it open in the powerplay. Walker bowled a beautiful length for large parts of his new ball spell and reminded many of a Slater and Gordon lawyer; “better to have on your side, than on theirs.” Ultimately, he finished with 3/25. Hefty lawyer bill for that kind of performance, but we all know it’s “no win – no fee”… we’ll get to that later.
The UV index was high, so Yuvraj Singh bowled a crafty spell of nine overs through the middle, tweaking it both ways for two wickets, while Wagon took a break from playing the flute at point to bowl a miserly spell of 0/25 from 8 overs. Ultimately set 219 for Victory, the game was in the balance.
The opening quickie overpitched to Emms early on and Larry replied “plz fix, rgds” as he dispatched a pair of drives to the fence. Unfortunately the bowler did fix and a slightly shorter one proved his undoing. A steadyish stream of wickets thereafter saw Greenvale wrestle the momentum at 3/44.
A semi-steadying partnership between Knightingale and Young squared the leger a touch and one unnamed observer (though he was in a rugby jumper, under a tree, on the far side of the ground) observed, “he can bat that Knightingale, he’s got good hands.”
Peacock (63) and Young (46) combined for a valuable 55 runs, but an untimely dismissal on the eve of the second drinks break saw Greenvale on top. With a bit too much to do, the Students tried hard right the way down, but ultimately fell ten runs short.
They waited 6 weeks for a dry week to play a game of cricket, but they put on a clinic instead. The Third XI utterly dominant right the way through at Princes Park.
Bowling first, Uni had two wickets before ten (runs) as the Wizard and Gus Molden (Net switch applications need to be submitted by COB tomorrow) got the ball rolling for the Students. Jamin Barron-Toop, who has a nice Mediterranean wash through his curly hair at present, asked a few curly questions to the Roos, who were unable to answer and Double Barrel finished with 3fa. A strong showing, he was backed up by Loop Pedal Durrant (2/13) and Lucious Locks Thompson (2/27) on debut. At one stage Tom Savill was horizontal in the air taking a catch and Uni couldn’t be stopped – rock and rolling Greenvale for just 93.
If he couldn’t find the right words at Miss Mucc just a couple of weeks ago, it was Josh Hahnel who left the opposition speechless on Saturday. The opener blasting an impenetrable 50 no to snuff out any hope the visitors might have had. A potent straight drive the source of a great many of his runs, Joel knocked off most of the chase, before Hugo Bienvenu told the umpire “it felt like six” and was granted half a dozen when his slog-sweep landed eight feet inside the rope. Pays to have pipes I guess?
A slightly soggy Greenvale Reserve wouldn’t deter the Fourth XI on Saturday, though the umpires milled about delaying play. Jerry soon set them straight giving Melican and Raf Epsetin the chance to hit the Roos right between the eyes. Which they did. Over and over again.
Pelican, whose penchant for a new white ball is matched only by a liking for Milwaukee Tools, blasted off right away, cracking 97 to get Uni off to a flying start. Though he fell short of a maiden ton, Melican’s hard-hitting display was a sight to behold and contained a whopping 11 boundaries and two sixes.
At the other end, Run Machine Raf Epstein went about his business once again. No, that’s not the business of finding talented recruits for trendy sneaker shops around Melbourne (is that the least cool sentence ever written?), but the business of driving the opposition insane. A classy 80 saw Uni reach an imposing total of 3/219 – a daunting prospect from just 45 sets.
Perhaps a fait accompli, Uni made sure of it with a flurry of early wickets, Harms and Shifter Sheahan breaking the game open in the powerplay. Trent McManus (2/5) was also impressive on debut and helped to Uni towards a bonus point as the Studnets bowled Greenvale out for just 136.
Dominant at the Uni Main on Sunday, the MUCC Women’s XI continued their strong start to the season as they outperformed Essendon at every opportunity to entrench themselves in the top-two.
Though they lost a wicket first ball of the day, the Students rallied, as Herman (50 no) and Grant (50 no) each put the Bombers to the sword. Their retirements not enough to halt the momentum, Dakota Edmonds blasted 19 to close out the innings, Uni finishing with 2/146 from their 20 overs.
A disciplined bowling performance from the Students meant Essendon had no chance, as Uni restricted the run-rate and piled on the pressure to bring about the first wicket through a run-out. From there Lopez continued her strong performance with two wickets, while Edmonds also chipped in with a wicket to keep Essendon to 4/51 from their 20 overs.
MUCC Vets XII
Uni 5/166cc defeated North Alphington CC 141 all out
The ‘Student Vets’ posted a comfortable victory to finally get their season in the top division ticking against a valiant North Alphington XI.
Under sunny skies at PP3, captain Matt Hewat tossed correctly and chose to bat after assuring his troops he’d bowl first. The decision proved a masterstroke; MUCC off to a flyer with Brett Murphy flaying (yes, you read that correctly) the NAccers to all parts (43 ret) at a strike rate above… eh… 50. Passers-by stopped in awe and white smoke was seen emerging from an Ormand chimney. Tim Grant (35) then held the middle order together against some tight seamers, before a rapid 50 run partnership between skipper Hewat (35no) and Stew Harris (24no) saw MUCC close their 36 overs at 5/166. Most pleasingly, the PP facility defibrillator went unused for another week.
New ball partners Greg Kennedy (4/16) and Josh Marquet (1/16) promptly took the p155, reducing the opposition to 3/8 and then 5/38. After some deft slower slower balls from Paul “Reg” Varney (2/16), the penultimate wicket was taken with 100 not yet on the board and the game was up. Michael Hotton and Paul Percy both received competition reprimands for taking very sharp chances, in a manner unbecoming of social cricket. Some late order striking restored some respectability to the card, before Hewat turned one sharply and smashed into the top of off. Opposition all out 141.
Bring on Round 4 once we’ve all emerged from the ice baths.