Saturday Games In the Balance

After a solid performance from both clubs on Day 1 of Sydney University’s 2-day fixtures against Fairfield-Liverpool, all games are poised for an enthralling day of cricket this coming Saturday.

In 1st Grade, after winning the toss and electing to bat on a well-prepared Uni No.1 wicket, the Students lost wickets early. Finding themselves 5/78 before lunch, the resolve of opener Ben Trevor-Jones put a halt to the impending capitulation. Almost carrying his bat, Ben batted for an incredible 345 minutes, striking 124 off 262 balls – partnering with Tim Cummins (55) and Dugald Holloway (48) – to ensure a strong total. After declaring with 4 overs of play remaining, Uni posted 9/295, with Fairfield currently 0/11 in pursuit. Follow the livestream for what promises to be an exciting Day 2.

Having won all 3 of their first 3 games, 2nd Grade remained confident despite losing their fourth toss in a row (perhaps a good sign given previous results) and having to bowl on a docile Rosedale wicket. After a wicketless first hour, Ryan Danne announced his presence with 2 quick scalps, leading to a mini-collapse with Fairfield at 4/86. However, mellow intent from Fairfield’s middle order stalled the flow of wickets – benefitting economies but hurting strike rates. Likely to bat on in search of more runs next week, Fairfield are currently 5/256.

At St Paul’s Oval, 3rd Grade were looking promising after opening quick Jazz Rinka claimed an early wicket, but a strong batting performance from Fairfield saw them to a total of 288 – bowled out with 2 overs to play. On a small ground, Captain Ash Cowan was the pick of the bowlers with a wily 4/23 from his 9 overs, supported well by Tom Kiereth with 2/62 from 19 overs. After negotiating the final 2 overs of play without loss, Uni are currently 0/7 in pursuit of Fairfield’s total.

In 4th Grade, Uni declared on 6/232 after an excellent 129-run stand for the 3rd wicket. Alike in name but not in style, the two Robbo’s combined to grind Fairfield down: James Robertson was all class as he amassed 84 while Michael Robinson tempered patience with power, scoring 61 with five boundaries (including 1 six). Declaring with 2 overs to play, Lewis McMahon struck to ruin another Saturday, and leave Fairfield’s score at 1/11 overnight.

Courtesy of outstanding performances by Brody Frost and Shehan Canagasingham, 5th grade continued their domination with the ball to have Fairfield on the ropes. Brody took 5/26 from his 12 overs and Shehan, 4/23 from 9.3 overs, to dismiss Fairfield for 165 in the 58th over. In chase, Uni are in a commanding position at 2/79 with the whole of next Saturday to pass Fairfield’s total and contest for a possible outright.

Despite the strong performances on Saturday, there was unfortunately little to celebrate on Sunday as PG’s suffered a heavy 141-run loss to a strong Penrith outfit in their final T20 at Howell oval. Their next game is a limited-overs fixture against Campbelltown on the 11th of November.

National T20 Championships the carrot for NSW Premier T20 Winners

With the NSW Premier Cricket Kingsgrove Sports T20 Cup commencing this Sunday, Uni 1st Grade will front up for a double-header against Wests (10AM) and ACT (2.30PM) at Uni No.1. Having named a strong squad that includes former Test and Big Bash cricketer Ed Cowan, current NSW Blues batsman Nick Larkin, and ACT Comets players Joe Kershaw and Hayden Kerr, Uni are strong contenders for the tournament.

Cricket Australia have also increased the weight of the series, with the two divisional winners (Sixers and Thunder Cup) being sent to compete in the inaugural national premier T20 championships in Adelaide next year.

“Using the T20 format to showcase and celebrate Premier Cricket across Australia, the event will give players an additional opportunity to display and enhance their skills and strategy” (Cricket NSW).

We wish the Students all the best in their T20 campaign for 2018/19.