Clubs re­cruit well for cricket

Warragul & Drouin Gazette - - GAZETTE SPORT -

The pro­mo­tion of Jin­di­vick and re­turn of Neerim Dis­trict to di­vi­sion one head­line the changes for sea­son 2018-19 in War­ragul Dis­trict Cricket As­so­ci­a­tion.

Hav­ing held am­bi­tions to progress to di­vi­sion one cricket in re­cent sea­sons, Jin­di­vick’s build up which saw it highly com­pet­i­tive across all grades last sea­son has seen the Jump­ing Jacks reach their de­sired des­ti­na­tion.

A bevy of re­cruits over the off-sea­son in­di­cates they won’t be just mak­ing up the num­bers.

Neerim Dis­trict will re­turn to the top grade after top­ping the di­vi­sion two lad­der, hav­ing dropped back for a sea­son.

Long­warry has fallen vic­tim to the change, drop­ping back to di­vi­sion two cricket after just the one win in the top-grade last sea­son.

The changes will see di­vi­sion one re­turn to an eight-team com­pe­ti­tion, elim­i­nat­ing the need for a bye as per last sea­son.

The top three di­vi­sions will com­mence on Sat­ur­day, with the lower se­nior grades to be­gin the next week.

The ju­niors will be­gin with a T20 gala day on Sun­day, Oc­to­ber 14 to kick off its preChrist­mas T20 com­pe­ti­tion.

Buln Buln

Last sea­son: Pre­miers Buln Buln will be push­ing to make a re­turn to the top step in sea­son 2018/19.

The Lyre­birds have made some key sign­ings to a largely un­changed side that took last year’s di­vi­sion one premier­ship.

The club will be look­ing to fur­ther strengthen across all grades un­der premier­ship win­ning coach Bryce Mon­a­han.

Young English crick­eter Jack Paull has re­signed fol­low­ing a suc­cess­ful 20178-18, which saw the open­ing bats­man take out the Alan Rankin medal for best player in the grand fi­nal and Peter Hey­wood medal for best player at se­nior coun­try week.

Jack­son Noo­nan and Jack Ar­mour will re­turn to the club sharp fol­low­ing suc­cess­ful stints in Eng­land.

In a fur­ther boost, Wil­son Pol­lock and Daniel Hamil­ton re­turn to the club. An at­tack­ing left han­der, Pol­lock re­turns fol­low­ing a coach­ing stint at Poowong-Loch while Hamil­ton is also re­garded as a power hit­ter, re­turn­ing fol­low­ing a stint in the Trar­al­gon dis­trict.

Drouin

Last sea­son: Semi fi­nal­ist Not sat­is­fied with its semi-fi­nal ap­pear­ance last sea­son, Drouin will be out to se­ri­ously chal­lenge for the premier­ship.

The Hawks have also re­cruited well. The club has ap­pointed Sam Van Der Zalm se­nior coach.

A mid­dle or­der ag­gres­sive bats­man who also bowls some off-spin, Van Der Zalm led Devon Mead­ows to the West Gipp­s­land premier­ship last sea­son.

Van Der Zalm is no stranger to the com­pe­ti­tion, hav­ing coached Iona to a premier­ship in 2015.

Ta­lented bats­man and crafty bowler Jim Glen will as­sist as as­sis­tant coach fol­low­ing coach­ing stints at Glen Alvie and Nar Nar Goon-Mary­knoll.

Dy­lan Serong has crossed from Long­warry, with the young mid­dle or­der bats­man and off­spin­ner look­ing to con­tinue play­ing in di­vi­sion one.

Ellinbank

Last sea­son: Fifth Hav­ing bro­ken through to play fi­nals cricket in 2016-17, Ellinbank fell dev­as­tat­ingly short last sea­son to miss the fi­nals by per­cent­age.

The club will be look­ing to re­turn to fi­nals cricket un­der new coach Ben Spicer.

Spicer joins the club from Koo wee rup, where he played a part in their back-to-back pre­mier­ships.

Nick Fair­bank, who has led im­prove­ment at the club over pre­vi­ous sea­sons, has stepped down as coach but will re­main at the club.

Hal­lora

Last sea­son: Run­ner up A peren­nial fi­nal­ist in re­cent sea­sons, Hal­lora can’t be dis­counted from premier­ship cal­cu­la­tions.

Jin­di­vick

Last sea­son: Run­ner up in di­vi­sion two Hav­ing achieved its am­bi­tion of pro­gress­ing to di­vi­sion one, the Jump­ing Jacks have put in mea­sures to be com­pet­i­tive at the top level with sev­eral key sign­ings over the off-sea­son.

Lead­ing the sign­ings is over­seas player Dananja Madushanka, a bowl­ing all-rounder who can hold his own with the bat in the mid­dle or­der.

Zac Chap­lin comes to the club hav­ing played rep­re­sen­ta­tive cricket through­out his ca­reer. Last sea­son he was cap­tain of West Gipp­s­land’s un­der 21 squad.

Ta­lented left arm quick Thom Jones has joined from Pak­en­ham, while the club is hop­ing for big things from Jor­dan Lark­man who re­turns after a sea­son off due to work com­mit­ments.

Club lead­ing wicket taker from 2016/17 Shan­non Mitchell has also re­turned.

The Jump­ing Jacks have also added ex­pe­ri­enced cam­paigner Craig Boswell and Jar­rat East­burn. The pair have spent the past two sea­sons as cap­tain-coach of Narre War­ren and Chel­tenham Park re­spec­tively.

The ju­niors have also been bol­stered, with Dave Nobles ap­pointed de­vel­op­ment coach fol­low­ing a sim­i­lar role at Bea­cons­field.

Neerim Dis­trict

Last sea­son: Pre­mier in di­vi­sion two Neerim Dis­trict re­turn to the top grade fol­low­ing a suc­cess­ful sea­son in di­vi­sion two.

With a young team steadily on the im­prove, the Stags will be look­ing for a fruit­ful re­turn to di­vi­sion one after strug­gling to keep pace in 2016-17.

Western Park

Last sea­son: Semi fi­nal­ist Western Park will aim to be in con­tention once again.

While Tyler McMil­lan has re­turned to Bun­yip, Troy Lehman has crossed from Long­warry to add some ex­pe­ri­ence in a ta­lented young team.

Leigh Dis­ton has been ap­pointed se­nior as­sis­tant coach, adding an­other all-round op­tion to the team. Dis­ton has played the past four sea­sons with pre­mier club Casey South Mel­bourne. Sam Bat­son con­tin­ues as club coach.

Yar­ragon

Last sea­son: Sixth Yar­ragon has also re­cruited well as they aim to con­tinue ef­forts to push to­wards play­ing fi­nals.

Gamini Ku­mara will con­tinue as cap­tain­coach, and sign­ings at his dis­posal in­clude for­mer first-class crick­eter Nuwan Per­era, an off-spin­ner who is a handy mid­dle or­der bat.

Da­minda Ra­japak­sha comes to the club from Hamil­ton as a cagey spin­ner and cava­lier bats­man while open­ing bats­man Gayan De Silva joins from Dan­de­nong Dis­trict club Park­more Pi­rates.

The Pan­thers con­tin­ued sea­son prepa­ra­tions with a hard-fought prac­tice match against Trar­al­gon side Cen­trals, fall­ing just four runs short of top­pling a handy side.

The War­riors were vic­to­ri­ous in the un­der 12 grand fi­nal. Pic­tured back row from left Sam Far­ru­cia, Seth Clark, Bianca Zur­rer, An­drew Marks (be­hind) Zizi Pozze­bon, Poppy Barry, Harry Coster and Liam Bar­row, front row Sa­man­tha Hayes, Tyler Jolley, Hamish Zur­rer, Thomas Pet­ti­grew, Adrian Hayes, Zach Coster and ly­ing at front is goal keeper Re­gan Smith; Pho­to­graph: Michael Robin­son.

Churchill and Aztecs men’s teams came to­gether to cel­e­brate a closely fought grand fi­nal. Pic­tured back row from left Dy­lan Geffs, Dan Gal­way, Ri­ley Tay­lor, Aztec Goalie Michael Craw­ford, Matt Tay­lor Cory Tay­lor, Churchill goalie Owen McLaugh­lin, Matthew Fisher, Colin Par­nall, Matt Keen, Matt Wells, Paul Bai­ley, Steven Boltong, Lee Cooper, Jamie Cob­bledick, Luke Tay­lor, Steve Fal­lon, Har­vey El­lis-Wil­liams, Brian Tay­lor, Joel Mur­tach, front row Sherwin Mar­i­ona, Ro­han God­frey, Dean White, Lach­lan White, Daniel God­frey, Shaun Hudgell, Toby Tay­lor, Mark Phoenix, Bren­dan ‘Spud’ North and Tom Tay­lor; Pho­to­graph: Mar­garet North.

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