For us, it was a chance to stroll through the ordinary Jack Pace Shield rounds undefeated. For them, it was a must win, do or die contest against their old foe and sworn enemy, Cricketers’ Club of NSW.

Sydney University Cricket was proud to announce the introduction of the Sydney Uni Lions to its pride for the 2017-18 season, a rebranding of the Sydney University Veterans. The Lions would closen ties to its Grade club and maybe even give those Metro Cup kids a second game against some old blokes like Peter Buruma (how’s the hammy mate?) and an unnamed pensioner who taps on with a gold card on his way to the game these days.

The Lions were however to be a ‘social’ team competing in the City & Suburban competition for 2017-18 and provide students with a fun and flexible cricket experience, whilst connecting with a vast network of its Alumni who play for C.C.N.S.W. and enjoy afteroons spent spanking balls around Camperdown as a new forms of “pure maths”,cricket laws” or “advocacy by sledging”.

We won the toss and batted. Curtis Murray looked the part with a solid on-drive but chipped one to mid-off. 1 for 5. Simon James joined Tom Robertson and made sure of every opportunity to run Tom out by reply. At one point, the keeper fumbled one at the stumps with Tom halfway down and the partnership grew with a number of well struck boundaries to 2 for 91 at drinks. Tom (on 30) edged one to the keeper and Mr Paul Nash (18) was a suitable replacement until a fielder on the fence saved a six on the fence off Paul Moorhouse. 

Simon eventually missed a straight one on 51, leaving Sam Millar to do some damage. 6, dot or 4 was the order of business and a quick 42 from 23 balls was ended by yet another catch on the boundary. The new Robertson (Ed), looked to be building a good innings however a mishit on 17 led to his demise, caught, and left Soren Hughes and Jim Hadley to scrap it out over the last three overs. It was a victory for Jim on a count back, having connected more often. 6 for 225 meant time for the best (and only) tea in City and Suburban.

The Lions were well fed at tea so as not to take issue with the same bowler opening from both ends. He must been tired after 10 overs straight but we’re all still wondering if it was Ed or Ian Robertson. Edwian? Well bowled either way, with figures of 2 for 46 from 10.

Not much has happening with the bat for the Lions who were 3-75 at the interval thanks to a wicket from Mr Nash. He and Jim Hadley tied them in knots for a while before Tim Croft decided the Lions’ JPS existence could still be recovered and so he started to hit the boundary. Taking singles on nearly every ball, we put Edwian back in the game with a couple of run outs in succession.  Edwian’s father hit the stumps in the field at the expense of Paul Moorhouse and Mark Henwood also picked up a couple of wickets. With Mr Croft gone and not too much hitting left in the bag, the Lions crawled along to the end until we finished their JPS dreams with a last ball wicket.

So it’s a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all and let’s hope we all get through bushfire season without incident. Enjoy the break lads. Solid start to the season. 

The Team was: Curtis Murray (w) 4, Tom Robertson 30, S. James (c) 51, Paul Nash 18, Sam Millar 42, Ed Robertson 17, S. Hughes 19*, Jim Hadley 20*, Jed Wesley-Smith dnb, M. Henwood dnb, Ian Robertson dnb.

The Result was:-

CCNSW: 6-225 (S. James 51, S. Millar 42)  (35 overs)


Sydney University Lions: 10-205 (35 overs)

By 20 runs.

FoWs: – 1-5 (Murray); 2-77 (T. Robertson); 3-108 (Nash); 4-139 (James); 5-184 (Millar); 6-195 (E. Robertson).

The Bowling was: – I. Robertson 7-0-40-3; E. Robertson 7-1-37-0; P. Nash 7-1-23-1; J. Hadley 6-0-29-1; J. Wesley-Smith 2-0-17-0; S. James 2-0-13-1; S. Hughes 2-0-16-0; M. Henwood 2-0-24-2.

The Fielding was: –

Run-outs: T. Robertson 2, I. Robertson 1

Catches: C. Murray (w) 2, S. James 1, J. Hadley 1

Stumping: C. Murray 1

Player Points: – 3 to Ian Robertson; 2 to S. Millar; One to Edward Robertson


CCNSW and XXIX teams in front of the pavilion at the Bradman Oval, 15 December 2019.
CCNSW Team: Back Row (Left to Right): P. Brandon, S. Ridge, G. Brooks, M. Knox, G. Mortell, C. Murray; Front Row (Left to Right): S. Hughes, B. James, T. Robertson, P. Knox (Scoreboard Official), S. James, M. Henwood.

Bradman Oval is the proverbial jewel in the crown for Bowral, a high point of tourism and cricket anthropology. According to the colony, the land formed part of Governor Thomas Brisbane’s original land grant of 2,400 acres in June 1823 to John Oxley, Surveyor. His son gave it to The United Church of England and Ireland, who promptly renamed it ‘Glebe Park’ and cricket commenced in 1891.

Lord Sheffield brought an English team captained by Dr W.G. Grace whom soundly defeated the  Twenty Four of Boural, all out for 46. The locals invented Don Bradman to return the lashing and eventually some statues of him and the museum et al, and in 1947 that the ground was formally marked as Bradman Oval.

The pitch is international standard is one of the most sought after playing grounds in Australia. For the club, it was an opportunity to take some 4 by 2 planks to the MCG “Mexicans” and make good a couple of close losses in recent memory. 

Losing the toss and being sent in to bowl, the XXIX team had erred in realising this was actually to Tom’s liking and probably a disadvantage to them given the haze of bushfires nearby impairing general visibility. The pitch was also dry and reminiscent of the now usual Camperdown wicket. 

Stu Ridge and Mr Knox opened for us, with some quality ball polishing locking in a good dose of swing bowling, Stu impeccable with 0 for 10 from 5 overs and Mr Knox impossible to get away with 8 overs 1 for 19. Brett James replaced Stu at one end, starting with a first ball bowled and another wicket fourth ball. A strong bowling partnership between Brett and President Brooks lasted until after drinks with only the occasional strike getting away from the fielders and Brooks picking up another batsman via a diving catch. 3 for 68 at drinks was a clear win in the contest for us and became a significant advantage.

The Melbournians had lay quiet in consolidating their way back into the game from 3 for 28. The next session would require more ambition. We too had tired a little and relaxed our fielding standards somewhat. While it was hot and the smoke had also cleared a little, there was still no explanation for Soren’s shirt shrinking 3 sizes after drinks. He looked a little like the Marshmallow Man in his 13 year old son’s playing shirt but alas, we digress.

XXIX ambition soon arrived in the form of Curtain and initially Brown (bowled by Brooks) then Stein who took a liking to Henshaw (aka Henwood) and Hughes (whose wardrobe stylist made his plump stomach seen upon each delivery) and scored 9 per over. Stu came back on for a bit, returned with interest, and they had set 207, Curtain with 104* to take back over the border.

From here it seemed smooth sailing. We rated it a 250 par score on a plush outfield, low and slow pitch and beautiful batting conditions on an international ICC accredited ground. Brando and Curtis opened up. Curtis was solid, evident from his first on-drive which seemed enough for the XXIX’s to move “Lightning Man” to straight on and save about 30 runs. Brandon was seeming them well but for some reason was hitting them directly at each of the fielders in succession. We had made a sliwish but positive start but lost Brando and Curtis shortly before drinks at 2/73. 

From here Simon and Tom were called to appear and the rest of us would be invited to watch a somewhat chanceless partnership that took us over the line with some ease. Both batsmen looked comfortable and assured of an imminent victory and the ball was hit to all parts of the ground. Some highlights were Simon nearly enacting revenge on Tom for running him out the week prior, Tom’s confidence on legside, Brett James and Soren (now struggling to breathe in his ever shrinking shirt) sitting on the sideline next in hoping Simon and Tom would run each other out and the elation and pure happiness on Mr Brooks’ face when we drew level with about 5 overs to spare.

Tom Robertson in action, all sleeves and aggression.
Simon James playing on the posh side of the field.

We spent the next 40 mins enjoying the sunlight and some cold beverages in the Bradman Library discussing whether the XXIX’s would host us at the MCG next year, how difficult it would be for them to beat us again and how well we played. Mr Brooks and some of the lads then continued the conversation late into the night at the Imperial Hotel and we were all better off for the experience. Well done lads, a good victory.

The Team was: P. Brandon 9, C. Murray 44, T. Robertson 71*, S. James 54*, B. James, S. Hughes, G. Brooks, G. Mortell, M. Henwood, S. Ridge, M. Knox.

The Result was:-

XXIX: 5-207 in 40 overs (M. Curtain 104*, M. Stein 44*)

Lost to

CCNSW: 2-208 in 35 overs (T. Robertson 71*, S. James 54*)

By 8 wickets.

FoWs: – 1-42 (Brandon); 2-61 (Murray).

The Bowling was: – S. Ridge 8-1-40-0; M. Knox 8-3-19-1; B. James 8-0-39-2; G. Brooks 8-0-33-2; S. Hughes 5-0-49-0; M. Henwood 3-0-26-0.

The Fielding was: –

Catches: S. Hughes 1, M. Henwood 1

Player Points:- T.B.A.


A decimated C.C.N.S.W. Masters side  suffered their second humiliating defeat of the season, this time on their travels to Riverwood to meet Georges River.

Coupled with the late overnight withdrawal of Andrew Dadswell due to family matters, C.C.N.S.W. could only manage to field 9 players. This thanks to some last minute recruiting work by David Craig to obtain Sam Skoulis, formerly of Cronulla Seagulls and rushed to the ground via ‘Uber’ transportation. 

Unable to summon any other reinforcements, which was largely due to the club having 3 fixtures scheduled on the same day, captain Mike Weaver exacerbated the situation by calling incorrectly at the coin flip. Georges River duly elected to bat first.

Responding somewhat to the Skipper’s pre-game talk that ‘this will be the greatest win in the Club’s history’, Ben ‘Buzz’ Stanic and Lee ‘ Leeroy’ Witherden opened the bowling with zest and with Georges River donating a sub fielder. Ben picked up the GR opener early, well caught at 1st slip by new chum Mike Dahl. 

One for 8, things looking positive for C.C.N.S.W.. Thereafter, things went to steady, then to bad and then to worse. 

In a period where Georges River had 5 successive retirees until the 2nd wicket fell with their score at 261, there were at least 4 easy catches put down and several mishit shots lobbed into the air ,falling in between fielders. Wicketkeeper Brett Favell struggled in the very hot, low air quality conditions. Unable to stop the several balls down leg side, and distressed when instructed to wear a helmet by the umpire  when standing up to the stumps, he was uncomfortable wearing it. Also ‘Favs’ went off the field at another point to rest a sore neck he had carried into the game. So C.C.N.S.W. had even less troops to use, to plug gaps in the field. Mike Dahl did a good job taking the gloves for a few overs until Brett returned, in a debut game for the club he may long remember. 

Lee Witherden and David Craig sent down some good deliveries without much luck. Mike Dahl acquitted himself well considering the small ground and the time he was introduced into the attack. He will have success in future games bowling his off spin when the wicket is more suitable and he is afforded more protection on a smaller ground. Craig Fletcher bowled with a good plan and unfortunately suffered as well, as C.C.N.S.W. simply didn’t have enough fielders on the day. Good effort from Craig Fletcher (‘Fletch’) in his return match, considering the circumstances. 

Mike Weaver was the sixth mandatory bowler used and the seventh, Emerson Wilshier, could only bowl one over before his shoulder gave way. Weaver, after being punished for two overs, switched himself to the other end later, to produce some reasonably effective death bowling. 

David Craig came back well also to ‘jag’ two late wickets, which were well deserved. 

But by far and away the best bowler on the day for C.C.N.S.W. was Ben Stanic. For the first time for the club, he completed the individual maximum of 9 overs and there was only one wayward set amongst this. In his return spell, at ‘the death’, he picked up a very good wicket with a yorker and kept the runs down. Georges River were 4-316 at the close of their 40 overs and it could have been worse if not for the ‘never give up’ attitude of Ben. He is a player of immense promise in Masters and will continue to improve with regular nets training. 

Facing a monumental task with only nine batsmen and with ‘keeper Favell requesting to be number 9 due to fatigue/stress/sore eyes, Mike Weaver and Emerson Wilshier opened up with a resolve to be positive and keep up with the required run rate of 8 runs per over. Emerson struck a couple of nice shots before skying a catch to deep mid-on after attempting to smash the ball up onto the outside motorway. Mike Dahl, in at number 3, received a long hop early which he unfortunately hit straight to square leg to be well caught for no score. 

Lee Witherden and Weaver then looked good to put on a nice partnership only for ‘Weaves’ to mistime a pull shot to be caught for 17. Lee top scored with 21 and Ben Stanic played a useful innings of 17 runs. Both players cracked three 4s each in a fighting effort. In between their occupation of the crease, Craig Fletcher was unfortunately bowled off his pads for a duck and David Craig run out with just one run to his name. At the end it was a stodgy performance by Sam Skoulis who was the final wicket to fall. Sam displayed great determination in his first cricket match for 10 years. Brett Favell remained nought not out, facing just one over.

The final score of just 75 runs was a reflection of the terrible conditions that had prevailed. It was a very bad toss to lose under the sweltering, ‘ fire smoko’ conditions and C.C.N.S.W. simply did not have the energy to mount any realistic challenge batting second, with such a large target runs required and with two players down. 

With more players available to select from, the new year of 2020, for C.C.N.S.W, promises plenty.

The Team was (9 players): Mike Weaver (c) 17, Emerson Wilshier 5, Mike Dahl 0, Lee Witherden 21, Craig Fletcher 0, David Craig 1, Ben Stanic 17, Sam Skoulis 6, Brett  Favell 0*.

The Result was:-

Georges River: 4-316 (40 overs)


C.C.N.S.W.: all out 8-75 (26.2 overs)

By 231 runs.

FoWs: – 1-22 (E. Wilshier); 2-23 (M. Dahl); 3-28 (M. Weaver), 4-28 (C. Fletcher); 5-34 (D. Craig); 6-56 (L, Witherden); 7-74 (B. Stanic); 8-75 (S. Skoulis).

The Bowling was: L. Witherden 9-0-53-0; B. Stanic 9-1-48-2; C. Fletcher 6-0-49-0; D. Craig 6-0-52-2; M. Dahl 4-0-53-0; M. Weaver 5-0-41-0; E. Wilshier 1-0-13-0.

The Fielding was:

Stumpings: Nil

Catches: Nil

Run outs:  Nil

Player Points: – Three points to B. Stanic; Two points to D.Craig; One point to L. Witherden


Crashing back to earth in the third round with our first loss!

Well done Garry Winney for getting the team on the park with thanks for help from John Parker, an import from Georges River. A 27°C sunny/cloudy day with smoke around from the bush fires. Lindfield won the toss and decided to bowl on what looked like a grassy but true wicket. But turned out to be a bit slow and a bit of seam.

C.C.N.S.W. innings:

The cricket gods failed to smile on us this day.Sittampalam Ragavan (“Raga”) was unlucky to be caught down the leg side off the third ball of the day. Credit to Billy the wicket keeper who did brilliantly for a mid sixty year old to take a diving catch. Ross Dalgleish was LBW to a ball that was angling down the leg side. Jim  Robson had a freakish slower ball from Paul Adams that pitched a foot outside off stump and came back to take the top of off. Peter Rolls was caught at first slip by an overhead fully outstretched one handed catch by Michael Collins.

Accurate bowling by Lindfield saw John Mesar bowled and Joe  Scarcella caught trying to force the pace. Garry Winney was looking good until stumped. John Parker was run out by a mix up with Jay Patel . Paul Georgiadis was LBW after a flurry and Jay Patel top scoring with quick running andwas the  last man out with a couple of overs to go. Our only hope was to get early wickets and bowl them out.

Lindfield innings:

A very exciting start with John Mesar hitting middle stump with his very first ball and finishing the over with a wicket-maiden.  Paul  Georgiadis followed John’s great start with bowling the other opener with his 3rd ball. 2 for 4.

Then on comes Raga and strikes with his first ball bowling their number 3 but by then their total was 37 and less than 50 to get.Jim Robson tried to weave his spinning magic but Ron Ness was up to the task and retires at 30 and they look home and hosed

Jay Patel bowled tight and got the fourth wicket after John Parker asked Ian Iveson to “Have a go”! which he did next ball but missed it and was clean bowled.

John Parker had one economical over before the next over by Jay and theythey made the required runs. Lindfield won with 19 overs to spare so at least we had enough time after the game to have a leisurely drink and a good sporting chat. The reason we play the game at this age in the first place.

The Team was (playing 11): –  Sittampalam Ragavan 0, Ross Dalgleish 2 , Peter Rolls 11(c),  Jim Robson 6, Joe Scarcella 8, John Mesar 10, Garry Winney 12, Jay Patel 18, John Parker 7, Paul Georgiadis 8, David Wright 1*.

The Result was: –

C.C.N.S.W:  10-84 (Patel 18) (37.4 overs)

Lost to

Lindfield:  4-85 (21.1 overs)

By 6 wickets

FoW: – 1- 0 (S. Ragavan); 2-11 (R. Dalgleish); 3-19 (J. Robson); 4-25 (P. Rolls); 5-38 (J. Mesar); 6-38 (J. Scarcella); 7-58 (G. Winney); 8-73 (J. Parker); 9-83 (P. Georgiadis); 10-84 (J. Patel).

The Bowling was: -J.  Mesar 4-1-20-1; P. Georgiadis 4-0-14-1; J. Scarcella 3-0-11-0, S. Ragavan 3-0-8-1, J. Robson 3-0-12-0, J. Patel 3.1-1-14-1; J. Parker 1-0-2-0

The Fielding was: –

Stumpings: Nil

Catches:  Nil

Run outs:  Nil

Player Points: – Three points to J. Patel; Two points to G. Winney; One point to J. Mesar

Umpire: Juris Turmanis

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