For McGain…if the cap fits, wear it!

A ball hadn’t been bowled yet and WGCA President and umpire Rob Hansen was already being heckled by CARDINIA Life Member Jeff Bailey on Saturday. Luckily it was all in jest…but what is in that big load that Hansen is carrying around in his arms. Read Cricket Snicks to find out more!

**Former AUSTRALIAN and VICTORIAN leg-spinner Bryce McGain is one of the most enthusiastic cricket people going around, and the now 49-year-old brought his love for the game to Gunton Oval on Saturday as guest speaker at CARDINIA’s Life Members and Sponsors Day. McGain started his presentation with a video featuring some highlights of his 100-wicket-plus first-class career, and then wore the caps of his clubs as he told his story that led from MORNINGTON Cricket Club right through to playing one-test for AUSTRALIA. McGain wore caps from Mornington, Peninsula Grammar, Frankston Peninsula, Bristol League, Essex, Prahran, Victoria, Victoria One-Day, Australia A and finally finished up with the big one…Baggy Green number 410 for AUSTRALIA! McGain, a Sheffield winner for Victoria, played one test for his country…ending with figures of 0/149 from 18 overs against SOUTH AFRICA in 2009. But the story that led to that belting – it’s one that the resilient McGain should be very proud of indeed!

**Speaking of wearing many hats, WGCA President Rob Hansen was well prepared as he entered Gunton Oval on Saturday to umpire the Premier Division clash between CARDINIA and CLYDE. Clutched in the arms of Mr Hansen were the following items: 1 Up and Go, 1 Powerade, 1 Tube of 50+ Sunscreen, 1 box of Protein Bars, 1 Caesar Salad Wrap, and, quite fittingly for the job at hand…one rule book. The big question that everyone is asking is: Where are you hiding your binoculars, Rob?

**There were many fitting tributes to CARDINIA legend Wayne Snooks on Saturday as the club officially opened the spanking new ‘Wayne Snooks Training Facility’ at Gunton Oval, but probably the funniest story came at the expense of a former teammate and Life Member of the club…Gary Quinlan. The intimidating Snooks was bowling rapid to CLYDE’s Gavin Nish in the grand final one year and by all reports had every intention of peppering him with some short stuff. But Snooks got the wrong bloke! Quinlan, who was wicket-keeping at the time, misjudged a Snook’s thunderbolt as it whizzed past the batter and only felt contact when the flying Kookaburra hit him right between the eyes. Quinlan is fully recovered now, but the story continues to grow…four stitches in his forehead at the time has now grown to eight!

**A 2.30pm Saturday afternoon trip from CARDINIA to KOOWEERUP – to watch some cricket and have a couple of cold refreshments – should be an enjoyable experience, but the pot holes on our local roads are bloody dangerous at the moment, causing damage to cars and almost causing accidents as drivers swerve to save their vehicles from damage. We don’t often have a political point of view in Cricket Snicks…but can the people in charge of this sort of thing look after us rate-payers and make the roads safe and drivable. Surely that’s not too much to ask!

**There’s something in the water at NAR NAR GOON/MARYKNOLL with two bowlers claiming hat-tricks in the space of a week. Aaren Corrin got the ball rolling last week, snaring his second career hat-trick against PAKENHAM in E Grade, while Nick Mueller joined the party on Saturday bagging three of the best against in a B Grade victory over CARDINIA. Mueller claimed the wickets of Vishal Sharma (0), Zach Kruiskamp (0) and Lachlan Boswell (5) to enter his name into the WGCA record books. Muleer also snared the wicket of Brooklyn Diwell to end the day with figures of 4/10 off six overs.

**KOOWEERUP was surprisingly bowled out for just 117 – off just 22.1 overs – by TOORADIN at KOOWEERUP on Saturday, which may have been a good thing because the game was going to finish late if the Demons had batted out their 40 overs. The reason, the big hitting antics of Kooweerup skipper Chris Bright, who lost two balls after launching two massive sixes from the entrance end at Denham’s Road on Saturday. Almost 10 minutes of play was lost on both occasions as players and supporters from both teams looked for the freshly punished white pills. Kooweerup veteran Chris O’Hara, who obviously has plenty of experience of looking for golf balls in the rough, found the first one after a new ball had already been injected into the game. That ball became handy when the second one was lost about 10 overs later.

**Speaking of big sixes, O’Hara himself wasn’t immune to being belted over the fence on Saturday, with TOORADIN wicketkeeper Ben Parrott dispatching ‘Tubsy’ to the squarish deep-long-on boundary during the Bulls’ 40th over on Saturday. The technically correct Parrott is not known for his big hitting. When asked if being hit for six by Parrott was a career highlight, Tubsy responded with…”It’s up there with Plozza.” Apparently being whacked over the fence by Lucas Plozza is something that Tubsy can’t get out of his system as well.

**It’s late notice for those not previously aware, but at 1pm today (Wednesday – Australia Day) two of the best teams in the WGCA Premier Division will lock horns when TOORADIN host CARDINIA at Westernport Oval. The two teams have brought forward their contest from this Saturday, to celebrate the big day, but also…and probably more importantly…free up their upcoming weekends. With names like O’Hare, Hussey, Lehman and Avery for the Seagulls, and Prosser, Nooy, Welsh and Wheller for the Bulls – it should be a beauty and well worth the drive to the banks of the Westernport.

**It’s been interesting to hear the views of two of the most respected players in the WGCA, with KOOWEERUP skipper Chris Bright and TOORADIN leader Cal O’Hare both in agreeance that PAKENHAM opener Chris Smith might be the best player they’ve played with or against during their lengthy careers in the game. It’s no surprise, with Smith dominating the competition this year. “He can hit it anywhere, but it’s his off-side play that sets him apart from the rest,” O’Hare said after the Seagulls big win over the Demons. That’s pretty high praise coming from one of the best all-rounders of the last decade!

**Speaking of PAKENHAM, the Lions are once again hosting one of the great days of the WGCA calendar, with their PINK LADIES DAY one of the most popular and fun events for the year. As well as having a huge amount of fun – mostly fuelled by the consumption of Phil’s Pink Drinks…lovingly poured by president Phil Anning – the day has also raised a lot of money over the years for the Jane McGrath Foundation. The event will this year be held on Saturday, 19 February, with tickets $35 which include an afternoon tea and guest speaker, with raffles and prizes to also be won on the day. This year the Lions are also offering people the opportunity to buy a Virtual Seat for just $10, with all proceeds being donated fully to the McGrath Foundation. Well done to Phil and the crew at Pakenham…who seem to enjoy the day just as much as the ladies in attendance.

**Surely, surely, when you’ve taken poles out of the ground in two successive balls, you know you’re on a hat-trick? Supposedly not for CRIB POINT and former NYORA player, Neil Clark. He took 6/12 on the weekend in the MPCA and also claimed a hat-trick, but while it was spread over his two overs, no one on the ground knew he had taken three in as many balls. Not buying it, if you’re on a hat-trick, you have to know!

**The SATHYAJITH brothers played a lot of cricket in the local area before moving to KINGSTON HAWTHORN in the VIC PREMIER CRICKET competition. SEN went viral on Saturday night after screaming at a teammate for dropping a catch. We love the passion and competitive nature., but the bloke his teammate dropped from CAMBERWELL was on 236 from 70 balls and had hit 24 bombs… you have to have accept the performance and have a bit of a laugh by that point.

**Running is over rated! Well, that is the mindset MORNINGTON bowler and tail end whacker, WES HALL, took into the final over of his sides clash against SEAFORD TIGERS in the MPCA. Needing just one run to tie, and two to win, HALL launched the ball onto the hill at Mornington. He called it: ’an elegant off-drive… over deep mid-wicket’.

**SPRINGVALE SOUTH and BUCKLEY RIDGES simply don’t like each other. The games are always competitive and awesome for the neutral onlookers, but the contest themselves aren’t anywhere near as good as the Facebook groups comments on the morning of the match. Microwave the popcorn and get scrolling the morning of when these two play, it’s extra-ordinary reading.

**On SPRINGVALE SOUTH, many complaints have come through the GAZETTE inbox that KYLE MARTIN shouldn’t be allowed to play sport anymore, because it simply isn’t fair on others. The NOBLE PARK footballing superstar does whatever he wants on the footy field, but on Saturday decided to whack an unbeaten 39 from 41 balls for the BLOODS… be bad at something, Kyle!

**One local club has been on the horn, they could very well have the recruit of the season land in its XI for a couple matches in the coming weeks. This player is far too good for this level and does it with both bat and ball…

**A non cricket related snippet, but well worth a mention. NARRE NORTH product AMBER CLARKE took the mickey on Sunday in the DANDENONG STINGRAYS NAB LEAGUE opener… she plays the Dustin Martin role and the role every footballer wishes they had: full-forward/on-baller. And on Sunday, she collected 23 disposals to go with her 5.2. If she wasn’t your favourite player by now, this will do it… 20 of her 23 disposals were kicks. When you’re good, you’re good!

**While we’re on footy, keep an eye out for something different in the paper in the coming weeks, GAZETTE reporter TYLER LEWIS has something special coming for all footy fans in the area.