“There’s no point playing our best cricket in round 4 if it means we’re not hitting our straps when we need to.” – The playing group has consistently been reminded that season 20/21 will be an exercise in peaking at the right time. How prudent… And while tigers mightn’t lose sleep over the opinions of sheep, they may well shudder, at the prudence of the Students.
After rain intervened last weekend, the First XI’s fate remains squarely in their hands. Win both games to play finals, they will be at Home for the final time in the regular season on Saturday. In an exciting development, enigmatic left-arm orthodox spinner and passionate celebrator, Doug Warren returns to the team, alongside Andrew Young.
Though rain cut short what was another Polish masterclass at the Albert last weekend, Andrej has found some rhythm the last couple weeks, passing 50 against both St. Kilda and Melbourne. More to the point, freshly shaven for a corporate photoshoot during the week, his chiselled and defined jawline is on full display.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Simon Mackin
Co-coach of MUFFL’s most promising young side (that’s Bundy&King#ReelEmIn in Melbourne University Fantasy Football League), Simon’s team made a promising start last night thanks to Carlton role player, Jack Newnes. Buoyed by this early success, Mackin will be keen to bowl on the Uni Main yet again, his traditional bounce and nibble an unpleasant experience for even the most capable batsman.
We are also pleased to welcome back supporters to the Uni Main. On Saturday, there will be a BBQ from 4pm at the Main. The bar will be open, so please come on down and support the First XI!
Rolfs returns as the Second XI push for a top-four finish. Rolfs has done everything he can to hurry his return to the bowling crease; even letting his handicap slip by a couple of strokes to ensure no further damage would be done to his spinning finger; a finger that turns the ball both ways. Hugo has also been “Bienvenu-ed” back into the Second XI; always keen to get to the ground early, Huggsy might find himself delayed by his brother – opening bowler Lucien – who is happier to take his time on a Saturday morning.
Cruelled in his 250th last weekend by both the rain and a less than favourable caught behind decision, Daniel Hutton will want to make amends this weekend. Having also just secured property in Clifton Hill, Hutton could be riding the good karma train this Saturday. Toot toot.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Lucien Bienvenu
It is that Lucien who you’d best keep an eye on. Should he arrive at Central Reserve on time, he’ll swing the new ball early and be armed with the stats of the opposition. A true MyCricket nuff, Lucien has been taking plenty of wickets in 20/21 and with Scholars’ Cross just around the corner, the late money could be headed his way…
“From the Academy.”
An exciting week for the Third XI, as two of MUCC’s brightest young stars are set to make their respective debuts at the level. Ali Khan and Harrison Sheahan, who represented MUCC in the U/16 competition have impressed with bat and ball respectively during their brief time as Students, and we wish them well at Princes Park on the weekend.
Facing second placed Richmond, it shapes as a real test for the Students, who currently sit a couple of games outside the top-eight. That said, it is an incredibly strong side for Uni on the weekend, and under the leadership of Savill and Skinner, look for Uni to tame the Tigers.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Nick Ritchie
After a torrid twelve months with injury and continued setbacks, Nick Ritchie is looking to find some momentum. Working tirelessly to keep the AFL running smoothly, Nick is a young star, and one of the most talented batsmen at the club. With a penchant for brightly coloured shoes and batting gloves, Ritchie will look stylish as he makes a big score on the weekend.
Ditchburn is back and the boys have already received a personalised rev up from Beefy – what more could a MUCCer ask for? Such was the vigour of Beef’s instruction on Thursday night, that Khush Talati couldn’t help but returning serve with “let’s hold our f-ing catches, boys!” Michael Forwood also returns; dubbed the second coming of Andrej Yaksender by Coach Keely on Thursday night, expect big things on the weekend.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Toby Rawlings
Using a New Balance bat that has so much tape, it more resembles Old Balance, Toby is looking the goods for a big score. A lover of the switch hit, Rawlings will take full toll should the Tigers miss on the weekend.
The first men’s MUCC side to reach the finals in 20/21, the Fifth XI will enter the contest with a great deal of confidence after disposing of Old Haileybury last weekend. Having conquered the APS in such a fashion, the Fifth XI will take on the might of the select entry government-funded Melbourne High School. Select entry also applies for MUCC’s XI this week, as it is a particularly strong side, that boasts a good deal of Premier cricket experience.
PLAYER TO WATCH: Jack Boyd
A complete performance from Boydy last weekend, the young wicket-keeper batsman continues to make his way as a MUCCer. Invaluable in the middle order, he will be able to move the innings along or play an anchor role should the situation call for it. His first final as a Student, and it could well be a memorable one.
30 YEAR PREMIERSHIP REUNION
Thirty years on from MUCC’s drought-breaking First XI Premiership (1990/91) the crew are all gathering today to celebrate and remember the incredible achievement. With some of MUCC’s greatest players part of the side, MUCC defeated Melbourne at the Junction Oval in a classic.
MUCC: 10/195 def. MCC 10/182
Enjoy the day, boys.
If you would like to see all of the match previews and reports for season 20/21, you can do so by clicking the link here