Prahran will be the Students’ first opponent in a jam-packed week of cricket that will see three matches of Premier Cricket played in just seven days.
Currently sitting pretty in third position on the ladder, the first XI can entrench themselves in the top-four with a good week of cricket.
Facing the True Blues at Toorak Park will bring back sweet and sour memories for some members of the First XI. Last time they were there, a stunning white-ball victory was the result, but one season prior, Mark Stafford and James Bett were limited to the Toorak Park change rooms as they battled food poisoning; what will the story be this time around?
In the absence of James McNeil, fellow Mc, in this instance McKenna will skipper the side. With a healthy winning record and a stylish coolness to match, good luck getting the ball out of his hands this weekend… Back into the team, Stafford and Iqbal will provide speed, swing, sweeps and spin and I think a few might be quietly hoping for a Stafford Special (no, that’s not an outswinger nick off, it’s a jumbo Natural Confectionary mix)…
PLAYER TO WATCH: Simon Mackin
A dangerous prospect for any batting line-up, Mackin’s added bounce and movement off the seam will be invaluable on a recently re-laid Toorak Park wicket. More than that, however, Mack-daddy introduced his teammates to Calbee Pea Snaps last week; revolutionary in the snacking game, the low calorie healthy chip alternative was a hit. Please bring some tomorrow, Simon.
Quelle palpitant – Il y a deux Bienvenus!
Along with two Bienvenues (that’s Hugo and Lucien for those playing at home) James Browning will also return to the Second XI to face Prahran at the Uni Main. Moreover, after Hutton was struck down by the Casey Sniper (Bad luck, D – gets one every year) Isaiah Borgas will assume the role of captain. If you have Borg on Snapchat, one can’t help but feel he has been looking forward to being back out on the Main for a while now…
Having found some winning form of late, the Second XI have worked their way into the top-eight. Hoping to build on this momentum, they will be looking to keep working their way up the ladder as the season progresses.
PLAYER TO WATCH: James Horn
He used to arrive at training at 3:30. Now he’s a corporate who arrives at 6pm donning a pair of chestnut RM Williams Craftsman boots. Times may have changed, but Horn remains the safest pair of hands in the competition, and with the bat, he will punish anything short of a length with a vicious pull shot.
After a couple of close losses in a row, the Third XI have fallen out of the top-eight and will be looking for a big couple of weeks to resurrect this.
A range of exciting inclusions will help give them confidence this weekend as they travel to Righetti Oval, former home of the SKOB (it’s more fun to say than write) to take on the True Blues. Lachie Melican, Alex Gall, Om Patel and Nick Ritchie all come into the side, and if you caught a glimpse of Nick Ritchie’s new gloves during the week (black and pink), then you too would be full of confidence.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Tom Savill
Standing resolute in defence of MUCC’s teacher brigade, Savill is out to make a misnomer out of the idea that teachers have too many holidays. Busy with his new role at Scotch, he will only be a hop, skip and a jump away from his new office on Saturday. One of the cleanest hitters and fastest bowlers when he finds his rhythm, the skipper will have a big say in Saturday’s result.
Round 7, the bounce back edition for the Fourth XI. Keen to make amends for last week’s struggles, the Fourth XI will be back at Princes Park as they take on Prahran. Welcoming Sharma, Bennett, Khan, Nayak and Rakes all back into the team, the Students are a young and rejuvenated team. What’s more, captain Laban Ditchburn trialled a high pressure sauna steam room thing during the week – so fair to say he’ll have even more energy than usual.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Tama Stockley
The Stock pot has been steadily bubbling away of late. Taking important wickets at crucial times, he has become something of a Mr Reliable in the Fourth XI. Steady with his line and length, he challenges the batsmen at all times and will be a real challenge for the True Blues’ top order.