• The Quokkas win, Rev plays a switch hit (and pulls it off) and The Dog bowls the 25th over, all pretty standard for one of our games…..

    With the outfield and the tourists still sozzled from the previous night (one got barred from the Gaso) we had them on the ropes at 6/85 with all the debutantes (Gazza, Robby & Stewart) getting a wicket on debut to go with Jay rattling the castle and the now normal 2 wickets in an over from the reigning B&F who now adds club all-time leading wicket taker to his life achievements.

    After drinks, the tourists ring-ins Rev (21), Roley (Rev minus 21)  and the league president Fos (58 off 20) got them to a good score of 9/177 with the Dog, Jay and Radar grabbing more wickets. Jay 2/19 and Dog 3/24 sharing most of the spoils. Special note to Pup who took 0/1 in his 23 ball two overs.

    After another amazing potato salad and spread from the Dog (is there anything he can’t do?), Radar and Alex got us off to a solid start with 30* for Rohan and a Curtoesque 17* (16 singles) for Alex. The runs continued with Stewart 23*, Dutchy 36* from 14, Robby 27 and 23* from Gazza in the best quokkas innings ever played in a gray cardigan, plus he let the captain hit the winning runs.

    Quokkas 4/178 win with 11 balls to spare.

    Bring on the Terminus

  • Match Facts:

    Sunday, November 22

    Fairlea East Oval, Yarra Bend

    Time:

    13:00 EST

    The Big Picture:

    For a team that prides itself on participation over a focus on wins and losses, this season has been a real winner for the Quokkas. Going into the game with only ten available to play after 3 steady losses, the saggy maroons are in top form to play a team new to the YPCA league.

    This version of the Old Bar is new to the competition & little is known about their cricketing or drinking prowess. I’d like to think they are a rag-tag bunch of plucky misfits, but maybe that’s because I’ve been watching The Goonies again.

    Form Guide:

    The Quokkas go into this game still winless for the 2015/16 season, having snatched defeat from the jaws of victory in their last game against the good folk in Nerrena.

    In the Spotlight:

    Tuesday comes back into the team at the top of the order with his big-hitting housemate, the Quokkas are hoping that the man under the ink can bring some more big runs to start the innings.

    After opening with Dutchy last week, Alex helped put on a 44 run stand & also bowled his customary deep, deep heat – though without the short balls. If he can keep this form up, he could well go home with a firm piece of plastic in his hands on Gownlow night.

    Team News:

    After the rush to play at the start of the season, the Quokkas only have 10 available for match day at the time of writing for the second week in a row. With several on standby, we should get the XI up fine.

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Absolutely nothing.

    Absolutely nothing.

    The Ten at the time of writing is:

    1. Pup
    2. Curto (c)
    3. Dutchy
    4. Local
    5. Tuesday
    6. Tuesdays housemate (man Friday)
    7. Chef
    8. Alex
    9. Jay
    10. Nick A-W

    Pitch and Conditions:

    And so the Quokkas trek back to Fairlea East, the home of knee grazes where backpackers go to disappear. Also the home of Shotguns 30, its truly the modern Bermuda Triangle. The ground is likely to be dry with a fast outfield, have no running water available or toilets. What a glamorous life these Quokkas lead.

    On the plus side, its only going to be 21 degrees.

    Stats and Trivia:

    • Incredibly, Tuesday and Chef both sit on 142 runs off 9 innings with 3 not outs each – for a matching average of 23.67
    • Tuesday has, though, taken 13 catches – better than 1 per match
    • If Pup should bat in this match, it will be his 20th innings for the Quokkas. He has scored 248 runs (9th highest) @ 19.08 for his career and taken 17 wickets (4th highest) @ 15.12 (so far)
  • From Captain Dutchy…

     

    Beware the Ides of March (and Keyser Soze).
    The Rose, 1st of March @ Fairlea West

    Captaining is a unique experience. You are informed of your impending captaining-ness, safe in the knowledge that you shall be the only one. That and Emu+Curto weren’t playing so the bluff was on. Having decided some left field thinking was due for the Quokkas I promptly arrived at the ground at noon. Unheard of. As were my team mates. Upon phoning Rev and discovering the opposition were making requests for the BBQ bike as there were no such facilities at the ground, I smelt a rat whilst standing next to the perfectly functioning BBQ facilities. At Burnley Oval.

    In my endeavors to introduce Left -field thinking I had gone so far beyond the outfield as to be at the wrong ground. 20 minutes of channeling that Ford-financed-Ad-I-mean-Bullitt-movie involving Steve McQueen and the Green Mustang (not easy in an ex ambulance!) saw me safely at the correct ground.

    JRod had inspired (shocked) me the previous week by arriving organised so I decided to follow in those footsteps and wrote down a list for both bowling and batting.

    We only had ten but the Rose lads kindly agreed to supply a fielder. Perhaps they sent him to the Burnley oval as he never eventuated. Ironically we fielded much better than normal as we avoided ‘getting in each others’ way’ with one short. The Oval was looking strangely green, as opposed to its usual dead grass tones and not its usual cow-paddock come runway type speed.

    Cuz, another Nichols family member more talented than Rev, opened the attack and managed to miss the bat at a pace and movement not seen since Lennie Pascoe terrorised batsmen in the 80’s.

    Pup, and Snipper bowled the 2nd (8 runs) and third overs (12 runs) as part of the rotating (possibly confusing) one over each policy.
    Snipper seems to have developed the ability to bowl really good line and length and STILL get carted. There is no justice in Pub cricket. But more about that later…
    Bowl’en (I think Rev misplace that apostrophe just to wind me up!), Rev and Cuz all were at the wrong end of some lusty hitting by their captain (Tooms) but luckily my ‘left’field’ captaincy knew this would result in retirees. Both openers for that matter. Time for my secret weapon. JRod.
    I knew he could regain medium pace glory, as long as i gave him most of the match to recover before his second over. He proceeded to bowl two Maidens. Potentially a Quokkas first?!
    It seemed like the right time to hide my bowling whilst the batters were somewhat comatose. 25 runs, a wicket (we shan’t mention that someone dropped another chance nor shall we mention it was Bowl’en…) and a tea break later I could let the real bowlers back onto the track.
    So at the break The All new Rose were about 114 and the numbers were looking ominous. With the Rose’s first three batsmen making a combined 115 runs (all retired including 50!!! from Tooms). The Quokkas have historically entered a ‘recession we had to have’ like post drinks torpor. Or to be blunt we tend to get spanked in the second half.

    And then a miracle descended upon the ground, placed curiously next to a female prison. To be clear no prisoners descended upon the ground but an escape was the order of the day.

    Mick, Don ‘small goods’, and Rev were really tight (insert your own double entendre ) and then he arrived. The Big Dog.

    ‘Sending down’ isn’t really applicable as Dog tends to send the ball vertically upwards. He even hit the pitch consistently (it must be noted the pitch was 60% its usual width due to the City of Yarra’s ‘maintenance regime’ or lack thereof…). Never a dull moment as the Irishman, dreaming of Irish cricket glory (not the English captain’s. who is also Irish, but those actually playing for Ireland…) totally bamboozled the batsmen.

    One lad asked Pup who was behind the stumps “What does this guy do wit the ball?” to which Pup replied “Usually puts it over the midwicket fence”.

    Audible sniggering was heard from the crease, proceeded by repeated swishing of willow as the Rose batsmen managed a meagre 20-odd off Dog’s deserved three (YES, 3!) overs. Possibly another first for the Dog. And why? 2 wickets is why. We all gathered at his messiah-like presence as he held his arms aloft with a total look of “I told you so!” as fell at his feet. Don ‘smallgoods’ sent down a couple of handy overs and the Rose were starting to slow… Bowl

    Having only ten players turned out to be a strange blessing as it meant five of our bowlers had to bowl a third over. This resulted in Rev, Cuz, Snipper, Pup and the aforementioned Dog to make up the extra five overs. And what overs. Dog’s 2 wickets, a plethora of dot balls and only a handful of precious boundaries ensued and none of those pesky retirees revisiting the stage saw The Rose end up with 181.

    The batting scorecard looked not unlike one of those horizontal bar charts comparing a disparate array of elements. Such as Quokka email response-rate (some might place me on that top line…) or the variability of Local’s run-up length (it gets shorter with each delivery…).
    In other words, a big triangle.

    Back at the start of this tome I mentioned BBQ issues. The Rose didn’t bring one. There was genuine fear in some players’ hearts but luckily some lateral thinking saw a grand spread of sandwiches (which doesn’t really do them justice) placed before us. 181. Could we do that?

    Cinderella moments come upon us rarely but the romantic notion of sending Big Dog and Pup out to open seemed fitting. That and a good balance of belligerence and scoring ability.

    The Dog continued a spanking game by scoring 22 off 21 and Pup 18 off 12. A solid start and the captain was pleased.

    Snipper arrived at the crease continuing the merriment with 31 retired off 22 cherry-ripes. Small Goods meanwhile noodled out a handy 8. Thus it was my turn and reeling from some liberal feedback from fellow Quokkas the previous game, where I dared score at a meagre run a ball, I felt the need to get the worm pointing north and to keep the scoreboard ticking over. Feeling somewhat redeemed with a 31 off 20, despite an entire over (Tooms again!) of dot balls (the lad can bowl; when he hits the pitch; a rather disconcerting thing to face…).

    ‘Cuz’ meanwhile was diligently ticking along and only conceded two dot balls, ending in a J-Curve finish to his dig with a sequential 4-6-6-1. At the other end JRod was putting on a master class of running singles. No matter how far the ball was hit. The concept of a ‘two’ seemed about as likely as a Demon’s premiership and i may have given some ‘feedback’ whilst chasing Maxy’s lusty hitting on the sidelines.
    Nick, Bowl’en and Radar came and went in a flurry. Cuz’s last gasp had dragged the equation back within reach and with only ten players the Quokkas were back into the retirees. Re-enter Snipper, who added another 12, among which Radar was run-out in the urge to score. I walked back out and faced Tooms again! I managed to ‘Noodle away a run to leg side’ * and got the Snipper back at the business end.

    With 12 off 12 deliveries required it was a tense affair. The vast majority of 2014/15 Quokka matches seem to have been decided in the last over. Great for TV ratings. All we needed was TV coverage. Eliza and her ‘allegedly’ home baked goods would have to suffice…

    With a four and a six dispatched by the Broadie (not-so) wide-boy we now only required one run with seven balls to go.

    I whispered to Snipper that I was equal with Ed on the season’s runs and was keen to vanquish the engineering Hipster in the runs tally.

    Snipper, being a team player promptly dispatched the next delivery for six!

    And not just for six but, with sedition in his eyes, hit the aforementioned six INTO MY VAN!!!

    Such a nice lad with such a nice smile and disposition; Henceforth to be referred to as ‘Keyser Soze’.

    Oh, and we thus-ly won the match. What a great escape in great weather, a great spread and The Rose lads a truly lovely bunch of lads.

    Much merriment ensued, we returned to the Labor in Vain and all was good with the cricketing gods.

    Yours ‘never lost as captain’ Dutchy.

    * Pup, manning the scorebook, generously scored my legside shot as a run off the bat, putting me one run ahead of Ed in the season’s tally, but I must confess it was a leg bye, which makes next week’s return leg against the Ballarat Seymour Lads a showdown of the willow for Gownlows Glory.

  • Match Facts:

    Sunday, March 1 – Fairlea West Oval, Yarra Bend

    Start Time: 1pm

    The Big Picture:

    While 2015 has been one of the busiest summers of cricket, it hasn’t been the kindest of years to The Quokkas; with only 2 wins from 6 games. Those 2 wins haven’t been against pub league rivals either, 1 was a very tight contest against the VBCA and the other a 1-wicket win against the ASRC. With a re-match against Seymours on Lydiard scheduled in for March 15, this game against the Rose will be the penultimate game for the season & (probably) the last chance for a win; not that winning is what the Quokkas are about.

    Seen here; what it's about

    Seen here; what it’s about

    As it stands, the approach for playing for playings sake has never been better represented than with this game as no less than 14 players have confirmed that they are unavailable. 2 new players have had to be called in, as well as new players Jim and Small Goods, and Cunners – who hasn’t been seen since the 2010/11 season.

    In regards to the opposition, the Quokkas haven’t played The Rose since the infamous match in 2012/13. That squad has subsequently moved to a new pub, The Birmingham, so The Quokkas aren’t really sure of what to expect. They are, apparently, mates of Radars, so they must be good blokes.

    Not always happy, but good

    Not always happy, but good

    In all, it’s a bit of a melange and a sign of a team that has played possibly too much cricket.

    Form Guide:

    Quokkas: LWLWLLW

    The Rose: n/a

    In the spotlight:

    Dutchy entered the 2014/15 season slightly behind Ed for career runs scored & a private competition between the two of them for the first to 500 was won by Ed a few weeks ago against the ASRC. Since then, though, the Dutchman has passed 500 and only needs 31 to draw level with Ed. Can the big-hitter go the distance and win the batting award from behind?

    This game also represents the 40th time the Big Dog has strode out for The Quokkas in a YPCA-rules match (doesn’t include VBCA or BDNO games). A great reflection of his commitment to social cricket & a triumph of availability over ability. Well done, the ‘Dog.

    The man is an excitement machine.

    The man is an excitement machine.

    Team News:

    As mentioned, the Quokkas have had to search high and wide to get their XI together, which they have done. It is (at this stage):

    1. Big Dog
    2. Dutchy
    3. Snipper
    4. Ball’en
    5. Rev
    6. Cunners
    7. Nick AW
    8. Jim
    9. J Rod
    10. Pup
    11. Small Goods

    Pitch and Conditions:

    The game is being played at Fairlea West, which is one of the most haunted grounds on earth. Despite it being a mild summer with a lot of rain, the ground at Fairlea West is as hard as cement.

    Artists impression of fielders in the outfield

    Artists impression of fielders in the outfield

    It is expected to be a warm day, so The Quokkas will be chasing in the sun.

    Stats and Trivia:

    • This will be the Big Dogs 40th game for the Quokkas, a well-earned record;
    • J Rod is in incredible form with the bat (23, 30* and 25 in his last 3 knocks) & is now only 12 runs off 200 career runs. This will make him the 10th Quokka to hit the milestone (after Ed, Emu, Dutchy, Rowdy, Big Dog, Curto, Radar, Phantom and Pup);
    • Up until the last game, Snipper had only been out once this season, and that was when Radar ran him out in the first match. As a result, his average sits at a lofty 57.
  • For a cricket club that plays the game for fun and inclusion, a game like the one against the ASRC had previously unknown importance. If ever there was a time to enjoy the game for its own sake, this was it. The importance of enjoyment brought back memories of Dolph Lundgren in ‘Universal Soldier’ with his line: “Are we having fun yet?”.

    And who could forget that?!

    And who could forget that?!

    Lining up at the Kevin Bartlett Recreational Ground, arguably the smallest ground on earth, was only ever going to add to the enjoyment of the day. It was agreed that a score of 200+ would be needed to guarantee the win.

    Oh, how we smiled at the thought of it.

    Working against our smiles, though, was the weather. With the thermostat pushing past 30 by midday and promising plenty more to come, along with the very un-Melbourne humidity levels, spirits moved from ‘high’ to ‘coping’ quickly. The weather had such an adverse impact that many of the ASRCs players decided it was safer to stay indoors. They were right. Still, with plenty of Quokkas and spectators available, two teams were constructed and the ASRC elected to have a bat.  Opening with Subi and Israr, the ASRC lads got off to a good start, particularly against Ed whose off-spinners went for 12 in his first over.

    Needing to put the brakes on a bit, Captain Rev lent on medium-but-accurate bowlers Paz and Chef and was repaid with interest almost immediately, with The Chef serving up a main meal of middle peg destruction. Sensing that there might actually be something to this accurate bowling approach, The Rev then brought on J Rod and Snipper, both of whom got in on the wickets too. Snipper even went on to take the old Richie Benaud figures one step further; 2 overs, 2 runs, 2 wickets and 2 catches! One of the catches was Super-Mario-esque, with Snipper appearing to jump while in the air.

    Artists impression of Snipper

    Artists impression of Snipper

    On the subject of catches, Tuesday was again everywhere, taking 3 for the day including a couple of screamers on the leg side boundary. He has now taken as many career catches as the Big Dog in 33 less games.

    Possibly dizzy from the heat or catches being held, The Rev decided it was time to go for a walk under the sprinklers in the neighbouring Soccer pitch and brought “Bowl’en” Shane on for a while, possibly because he thought the batsmen may hit a few to the middle of the pitch. The thought was almost correct, as “Bowl’en” went on to take 3 wickets off 2 overs, only the 3rd time a Quokka has taken 3 wickets in a game.

    Going into drinks with the score at 8-50 and with spirits lifted by the sprinklers, the Quokkas thought it best to let the ASRC bat 11 batsmen. Note to the patient reader: whenever the Quokkas get cocky, disaster strikes. On this day disaster took the form of the returning batsman Ishrah and super-sub (and birthday boy) The Big Dog.

    The man is an excitement machine.

    The man is an excitement machine.

    The Big Dog made a mockery of the leg-side field that was set for him, often hitting at and through the fielders placed there, particularly The Rev. His deft leaving of Emus lightning bolts outside off stump was a lesson for all young cricketers to follow. The innings was brought to an unexpected end by The Rev bowling off spin (as he had lent his shoes to one of the opposition) and getting one to pop up to Israh who edged it to Gully for ‘keeper Tuesday to run in and catch another screamer in front of Emu.

    The total had now moved to a more daunting 124, though not so daunting that The Rev arrogantly opted to open the batting with his brother. The strategy paid off to a degree, with the siblings both making brisk 5s & allowing their mum to go home and get out of the heat. J Rod arrived at first drop, and was soon joined by Shane, and even sooner by Radar with The Quokkas looking decidedly shaky at 3 for not may at all.  The ASRC were bowling brilliantly in the conditions, with Subi getting miles of inswing from his left armers, as well as solid support (and pace) from Hussain and Ikram. J Rod was the answer to clever bowling though, top edging over his head on at least 4 occasions to hit the boundary directly behind him, as well as punching singles and 2s along the lush outfield to hit his first retirement score (30).

    The retirement of J Rod precipitated another mini-collapse, with Emu and Tuesday registering 1s before being caught out trying to hit out. Emu’s dismissal was a particular highlight, with the large flightless bird being caught on the rope by the birthday boy (what a present!) by the bowling of the long-suffering Kathleen (Eds partner). My memory isn’t very good these days, but I’m pretty sure that’s the second time in 2 seasons that Emu has been dismissed by the fairer sex.

    ahhhh yes....

    ahhhh yes….

    Radar was then joined at the crease by Ed, who obviously likes sleeping on the couch as he hit Kathleens next 2 deliveries for 10 runs. The heat began to pinch again, with Radar losing his na-na and running himself out, bringing Dutchy to the crease.  Surviving an appeal for Leg-Before-St Kilda, Dutchy settled in comfortably and started working the ball around, creeping the score towards the target. A combination of the heat and the birthday boy then saw the end of Ed, who knicked an extra slow delivery to the ‘keeper, allowing Snipper to come in and hit the winning runs with the Dutchman.

    Not that the end result mattered, the game was all about having a go and having some fun. It was great to see the smiling faces of the lads from the ASRC and the Quokkas, showing how beneficial sport can be in welcoming people into the community.

    Thanks must go to Dave Cameron from the ASRC for helping organise the game, Yarra Council for letting us use the field, Prahran and Moorabbin Park Cricket Clubs for donating gear to the ASRC, Pup for umpiring and scoring all day & to everyone who helped out.

  • I had to be in Myrtleford for work yesterday and over the long drive I replayed those final two balls in my head a thousand times and I still missed them.  I think I can put it down to not being able to achieve the firm grip I like on my little master while holding JRod’s. Anyway, to the details…

    In classic Quokkas from 14 players had turned to 11 by Sunday with myself picking up the captains badge curto left behind before heading to the beach. We bowled first to the Prince Patrick and struggled for wickets early on until I turned to Steve “Chef” Waugh and on cue the stumps were rattled. That was the only wicket and significant event of the first 12 overs with the exception of Pup pulling a hammy which effected his onfield enthusiasm the same way a sardine effects the humpback whale migration

    After the drinks there was fielding not seen since roger harper graced the field in a windies shirt. The choke was well and truly put on by everyone but Local who went for two MASSIVE sixes (only sixes of the game). Local did have his revenge when Tuesday took a catch that went so high Cypress Hill would have been impressed. In the normal run of events that would have been the fielding highlight, but in a normal game, the man who Robbo mentioned couldn’t catch ebola at a Sierra Leone teenage pash party, wouldn’t have calmly caught a skier just inside the fine leg boundary. Yes you are reading correctly Jarrod McKenzie took a catch. I took a catch a few balls later and once again the Dog had come on a taken a 2for in an over. To assist my match report he passed me this information on the batsman.

    “First victim (unluckiest man in cricket to be out c JRod b BD) has batted six times this season typically hitting 30 off 10 balls and only out twice. Second victim had played for the team for 2 years scoring over 300 runs and never been dismissed until he encountered the dog’s slower delivery.”

    We kept them to 168 which was in our range so not too much pressure which was evident by the way radar and Snipper strolled between the wickets in their opening partnership. Snip did get the innings going with a lazy 23 off one over and the Quokkas were away. Dog came and went and then JRod and Robbo proceeding to try and run each other out but still somehow kept the score board turning over. Dutchy got the run rate down before walking himself out (“the fielders were all shouting bowlers end!”) and then threw a tanty not seen from him in at least 2 years when Jrod offered him some running between wickets advice.

    It got down to 19 off 3 overs and Tuesday got it down to 7 off the last over, Local was dismissed on the 4th ball with 4 required. I walked to the crease, feeling ok about it as I did this in the game before Christmas. But as the Dog put it at the labour afterwards when he was “consoling” me – Sometimes you are the pigeon and sometimes the statue – and cricket once again humbled another player as I didn’t connect to either ball and we lost by 3 runs. It was tough, I lost plenty of sleep since working out who to blame and then I worked it out…I was distracted by Chef parading around infront of the Townhouses shirt off and chest out.

    Prince Patrick 168 (Dog 2fa, Snipper boundary run out)

    Quokkas 165 (Snipper 36, JRod 23, Radar 20, Ed 0*)

  • Even for a newcomer to the Pub league it would be clear to see that the Quokkas and the John Curtain have enjoyed a rich and friendly cricketing history. This felt like a match full of the kind of characters that made you enjoy playing junior cricket so much… just older and a little more un-sober… which is all very nice and everything until, like the sizeable Alfred Crescent crowd, you bared witness to the exhilarating cliffhanger which resulted. It was sensational cricket theatre, unlike Shane Warne the Musical, surely to be etched into the memories of players and punters alike for at least, well, until tomorrow.

    Prior to play the Quokkas took to the field in searing heat in a way almost completely un-reminiscent of ducks to a pond for a bit of a “warm up” – but a reappearance from the nimble Pup and a debut from the soft-handed Tinny, who ended the day with 3 outfield catches, ensured the Quokkas continued their epic run of reasonably proficient fielding.

    With play underway the Curtain’s top order curiously took to the Rev’s opening overs (1/9 off 2 overs) like Indian ducks to a pond full of Mitchell Johnston. Solid bowling displays followed from Chef, Cruiser and a very economical Pup before the Curtain’s middle order unleashed some brutal hitting (even by Alfred Crescent standards).

    Wickets from Big Dog and Snipper helped to temporarily stem the flow of runs, but as the heat began to take its toll – forcing the reconfiguration of the outfield to the shaded positions only – the Curtain’s lower order again let loose. Tuesday was taken for three consecutive maximums for an over of 18, and captain Snipper – not to be outdone – was then belted for 19. Thankfully the innings wrapped up with some tidy death bowling from Chef 3/18 and Ed 1/25.

    Chasing 190 for victory the Quokkas batsmen got stuck in with Local, Pup and Chef hitting retirement scores. Big hitting also came from Tuesday and Tinny with quick scoring cameos from Cruiser and Big Dog… but there was drama to come!

    With Radar and the Rev enjoying a leisurely pootle at the crease it came down to the last over with the Quokkas needing 12 to win. The crowd was beginning to get vocal and someone ingeniously decided to tell the batsmen what the score was. That news to Radar was like an intravenous barrel of spinach to a cricketing Popeye. Teeth gritted, veins popping, the first ball of the over was heaved over the offside boundary for six. The second carted through mid-wicket for four and suddenly victory was looming…  but the third ball was mishit and skied upwards. The catch was taken as the batsmen began to cross – but in a moment of brilliance the non-striking Rev began to back-peddle, handing the pressure to the newcomer Ed who, amidst wild scenes from the sidelines, dealt the winning boundary with poetic flare.

    Congratulations to the Quokkas on a nail-biting win to cap off a strong run into 2015 and have a safe and happy Christmas.

    Very Merry Xmas

    Very Merry Xmas

  • Match Facts:

    Sunday, December 21 Pederson Oval, Brunswick Street, Fitzroy North

    Start Time: 1pm

    The Big Picture

    The Quokkas last game for 2014 comes amongst a flurry of good tidings and cheer.  Not only are the Quokkas 3 wins from 4 games, but their 1 loss was against far superior opposition & even it wasn’t a blow out. Their last game, against the Marquis, saw them win a very highly skilled match against brilliant opposition.  This has led many to ask; “what have you done with our Quokkas?”.

    The “Beef” Curtin are one of the Maroon armys favourite teams to play, having co-hosted the Small Day Not Out last season & also our opposition to perhaps the greatest Quokka game of all.

    With Christmas just around the corner, this match is sure to contain plenty of festive cheer.

    Form Guide

    Quokkas: WWLW

    John Curtin: n/a

    In the spotlight:

    Since coming into the side this year, Tuesday & Chef started slowly but have put in ever-improving performances with each game.  While Tuesdays fantastic year in the field (6 catches, more than Curto) has had the crowds talking, its his efforts with the bat (scores of 1, 6 and 25) that are really starting to change games.

    Similarly, Chef is starting to build confidence from his bowling performances and is starting to hit runs, and in a hurry too.

    Team News:

    The lost dogs home has called and as a result we have the indefagitable Pup back amongst our numbers.  The left-armer had a break-out summer last summer, and I’m not just talking about pimples.  Finishing second in the B&F only on a countback, Pup (16 career wickets at 13 & 178 runs at 16) is a welcome addition to the team.

    IMG_8574

    He’s baaaaack…..

    Perhaps due to the Christmas rush, the pull outs are a little premature this week.  Rowdy and J Rod have confirmed their unavailability, to be replaced by similar players; Rev and (new boy) Barnesy.

    Quokkas XI (probable):

    1. Snipper (c)
    2. Radar
    3. Big Dog (w/k)
    4. Ed
    5. Local
    6. Rev
    7. Chef
    8. Tuesday
    9. Pup
    10. Cruiser
    11. Barnesy

    Pitch and Conditions:

    The Pederson Oval is the home and heart of Yarra Pub Cricket with its grandiose grandstand and lush, long boundaries. The forecast is for a balmy 28 degrees and with the Quokkas batting second, they should be sure to keep their energy about them in the field.

    Stats and Trivia:

    • This will be Eds 30th appearance for the Quokkas (not counting BDNO or VBCA games), making him only the second player to do so (behind the Big Dog);
    • Locals hot run of form with the bat has seen his batting average this season boom out to over 10 (10.8 to be precise) at a pulsating strike rate of 0.81.  A vast improvement of the average of ~3 that he carried into the season;
    • The Curtins bowlers could be excused for having a double-take at the Quokkas batting averages for this season.  Snipper (62), Radar (45), Emu (68), Ed (48) and Big Dog (50) are all looking like Test candidates on paper, before one considers the YPCA retirement rule;
    • The Quokkas have taken an un-Quokka-like 18 catches already this season, though some of this could be attributed to the lack of attendance by J Rod.  More amazing still is that, even though Curto has been in the form of his life behind the stumps, Tuesday has more catches than him (6 to 5)
  • And so another season of un-entertaining cricket for the Victorian (Labour in Vain) Quokkas was crowned with an entertaining evening of celebration in the manner only known as THE GOWNLOWS.

    Taking up residence in the Grace Darling Hotel, the second-oldest pub in Melbourne, in the very room in which the Collingwood Football Club was formed, the Quokkas celebrated their own recent season with a count of the votes given, match reports read and awards presented for outstanding efforts.

    Highlights of the season were also observed, including the $5,000 raised for charity (Kickstart for Kids and the McGrath Foundation), the match against the Victorian Blind Cricket Association and of course the match against The Pinnacle Hotel (our win!).

    Joe “Lonely” Miller-Norman ended up taking out the Best & Fairest Award on a count back, after initially polling the same number of votes as Pup, though receiving more 3 votes for the games he played in.

    Bad luck to Pup, though he has years to exact revenge.

    Bad luck also to Ed, who now has to listen to Lonely bang on about this win, as well as the “Mighty Teal“.

    Other winners for the evening included:

    • Most Runs AND Most Wickets: Ed
    • Best Player at the Big Day Not Out: Robbo
    • Worst Player at the Big Day Not Out: Phantom (also picked up the award for the most runs against in an over; 28)
    • The Sledgehammer Award for Sensitivity: J Rod
    • The Zoe Goss Award for being dismissed by a female: Emu
    • The J Rod Death Bowling Award: Curto (for being hit for 14 runs off 3 balls to lose the game with an over left)
    • The Bruce Reid Award for Batting: The Rev

    Thanks everyone for a great season, here’s looking to season 2014/15.

  • First before any captains report, let me just go through how I was bowled by a woman.

    With that explained, I must say I was disappointed to see the Royal Oak field some ring-ins from Malvern Valley take batting positions 2,3 and 4. However, with Robbo and Pup ringing bells, we were able to keep a run rate low. That was until Ed came onto bowl. He bowled a really good toppie, but the five other balls, well, I didn’t worry about my car, the hits went over into houses.
    One ring in retired, JRod came onto bowl a wicket maiden, Derby bowled tight then Joe bowled smoke, taking pegs on two occasions.
    We kept them to 66 until we found out Klutzy the Keeper dropped the ball on the helmet. Make that 71.
    The chase started in earnest, Cupsy and Robbo slamming it about.
    “Best hundred dollars I spent” was Robbo, not referring to a trip to Bangkok but to the 2″9′ Gray-Nicolls Powerbow. As a general rule, in cricket, if it hits a tree half way up, it’s a six.
    With two retirees, Emu went in, and in true BDNO form, went out cheaply. Curto and Ed came together and just when the equation got tight, Curto saw off a ring in and a new bowler came into the attack.  He was described by Curto as “what you could wish for” and Rev described him as the “worst bowler I have ever seen with perfect tennis ball bounce” or to explain better; Ed hit him for a leg side six! Curto’s innings was 1..646 and the semi final awaited.

    The semi final occurred after 17 hours of waiting. We were a little rusty and were pelted about the park. Robbo, Joe and Shotgun all felt the pain. After five tough Tramway wicket less overs, we batted with Joe and Dutchy opening up to hopefully get near a 150 that we would need. Some big hits came off but too often boundary riders cut off fours.
    Joe skyballed and Dutchy went, not after some lusty cut shots! Then Local Derby came in and played some of the most abstract shots available…for sixes! Meanwhile, Cupsy had Jekyll and Hyded into Alastair Cook in the last Ashes, series swotting, cursing and missing everything. Relief came in all three poles being disturbed. I was at the non-strikers end and as he heard the death rattle he looked at me with the “there goes the never been out record”
    I was in again and made maybe a dozen (reverse sweeps are so 2012) but made the error of driving and calling before it beat the bowler. He dragged it back and Pup was run out.
    Salvation was to come from Robbo with his Bow of Power, blasting an unbeaten 24. I happily sat up the other end watching slog sweeps and pull shots. Rev came in briefly with his new bat too, and from the thick edge for 2, he knew his purchase was special as well.

    As for the final 5 overs, let’s look at how the Tramways team saw it. They slapped us around in the first 5 overs and bowled tight to the Napier. They deserved a grand final. Surely, the Quokkas won’t let these guys make 69 of 5 overs? Emu and Pup went all out attacking with a ring field and slips and went for 7 and 8.
    Surely 54 off 3 overs won’t happen?
    Fresh from baby duties, the Phantom came on to bowl. Cupsy successfully showed why he is not a vice-captain by convincing me that Phantom could be the X Factor. Barefoot, he bowled 6 short pitched mediums that were pogoed. One nearly went over the house on Alfred Crescent. It hit the second floor guttering.  661646 equals 29. At one point the batsman walked off, only to be told he was on 19* so he returned to bat, hitting another 6, then walking off.

    Screen Shot 2014-03-18 at 11.05.01 AM

    Screenshot of Alfred crescent oval, Alfred Crescent and newly damaged houses adjoining the oval – thanks again Quokkas!

     

     

    Returning to JRod, the death over king, Napier ploughed their way to finally tying with Tramways with one ball remaining. JRod bowled a decent enough OFF Stump ball, kissing the edge, Curto howled to his left and snatched it! Only for the ball to jar loose on landing because he has Mr.Burns arms. Napier were ecstatic, Tramways were gutted, musing an opinion about the Quokkas that many others had formed before.
    The real winner was the President of the league because the ar$eclown had no contingency in case of a tie.

    Overall, the finals summed up our season; batting is a feast or famine, bowling swings from very good to very poor and when switched on, fielding is awesome, but switched off, it is Tufnell-esque.

    Thanks to Rev and Ed for getting the show on the road and to all the guys for being upbeat even though with short games I couldn’t bat everyone as much as usual.

    As Cupsy said, nothing was better than watching the three ring ins for the Royal Oak with oversized bags trudge away first round losers wondering how the Quokkas rolled them.

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