Gee bit happening isn’t there?
As ever, the Department of Health got in touch on Monday night, meaning some Students would need a COVID swab for the second week running. Although we are becoming increasingly familiar with the process, Noah Croes repeatedly fails to hold back a sneeze post-test. Chagrin. In any case, while some isolated on Tuesday, others slammed; the Students making a winning return to the Super Slam against the Bombers. Most recently, club favourite Jarrod Martignago tied the knot, he and Phoebe sealing the deal on Wednesday afternoon!
That said, the Premier Cricket season moves forwards – fittingly against a creature that can’t move backwards – University taking on the Kangaroos in Round Four.
At the time of writing, Azaj Patel and Will Somerville are toiling away in the first session in Mumbai. Dry though the wicket may be, Greenvale Reserve is set to be drier tomorrow as Harrison Emms (naturally accompanied by his sense of humour) returns to the First XI.
Larry will be joined by James Bett; into the First XI for the first time this year. Having taken the mic as MC at Jazz’s wedding during the week, TOG was so excited that he split a pair of suit pants on the dance floor mid tarantella. Unmatched in his passion, we look forward to seeing his alter ego, Luigi Fettuccini, get amongst it on Saturday.
Keen to go three from three, the Students had better keep an eye on Rolfsy at backward point on Saturday. He spent the week as a storm chaser and is paying even money to take his iPhone onto the field to jump on “flight tracker.” Tray tables stowed, another win would see Uni prepare for take-off; destination: top of the ladder.
Leading the side, Fergus McKenna will play his 50th First XI match on the weekend. He has looked right at home ever since his debut, and a victory would be a fitting way to celebrate after a commanding century in his 49th match last week. Side note, Greenvale isn’t too far from Urban Surf where Ferg feels right at home. Cowabunga, dude.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Simon Mackin
Rarely has a man looked as good in a lipstick red shirt as Simon Mackin. Standing out like a beacon, our man “King” is multi-talented; his contribution to the Saturday Super Quiz proving invaluable of late. A fine bowler also, Mack has been sharing his wisdom throughout the state recently, running Level 1 coaching clinics on Sunday mornings – and one suspects he’s going to deliver a clinic of a different kind on Saturday against the Kangaroos.
“I do love a locker room. It smells like potential.” – Ted Lasso
As they head to the Main for the first time in season 21/22, the smell of potential will be thick in the air for the Second XI, particularly as they welcome a pair of Dans; McNab and Hutton, along with Elliott Durrant into the side.
Having suffered a disappointing loss last weekend, the Second XI will be desperate to set things right on Saturday. Nick Ritchie will enter the content full of confidence after a stunning 48 in the Super Slam during the week and could hold the key to the middle order’s success.
PLAYER TO WATCH: James Horn
Having organised what promises to be a bumper lawn bowls Sunday, James Horn is every chance to make it a delightful double with a dominant display on Saturday. Arguably the most dynamic batter at the club, James also likes to travel in style; either via Lime bike or his Honda CR-V proudly displaying a “miracles happen” bumper sticker.
Sharpened and ready to go, Pencil returns to the Third XI on the weekend. Joined by John McLaughlan and Sam Skinner, it is a very welcome trio of inclusions to bolster the Third XI as they travel to Greenvale Reserve.
A young and dynamic XI, Raf Epstein will take the gloves on the weekend. Vaccinated against COVID, Raf has caught the golf bug instead; emerging from lockdown with a baby draw and an improved short game.
A crucial match-up for the Third XI, Lachie Pedley and Tama Stockley will lead the attack as they look to continue some winning form heading into the Christmas break.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Rithin Rakes
Poised for a breakthrough match, RIthin is one of MUCC’s most promising young leg-spinners. Donning a bright green headband, Rith has spent a good deal of time around Fawad during the opening part of the year and will be looking to emulate Fuzz and take down the Kangaroos on the weekend.
Having almost won the impossible last weekend, the Fourth XI are desperate to get on the winners’ list for the first time in Round 4.
Happily, Princes Park fits into Keels’ self-imposed travel limit, so the Insurance Policy is in for his first match of the year. Our very own DOC (that’s Director of Cricket and not the Drummond St Pizzeria) will add some much-needed experience to a youthful line-up.
Further boosted by some Schoolies returnees, the Fourth XI will be looking for a stronger batting performance, after failing to reach three figures last weekend.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Hendro Dias
Playing for the Hendro Dias Cup (Hendro crossed over from Greenvale in the offseason), Hendro will be keen to make a statement against his old side. A handy all-rounder, it is with the ball where Hendro will really pose a threat, his big-turning off-breaks sure to extract something from a typically docile PP3 surface.