Opening partnerships remembered
FORMER Test opener Rick Mccosker and NSW batsman Stuart Webster were all smiles at the Baggy Blues Dinner in Dubbo.
The pair were reminded of the day they opened the batting in a Tooheys Cup match in Rick’s home town of Inverell in 1977. The Test opener left early but “Webbers”, who grew up in Orange before representing NSW 23 times between 1972 and the 77/78 season, went on to make a hundred.
“I was building a fence,” Stu laughed as he analysed the scoresheet brought by one of the bowlers on that day.
“It took me a while to break the run of singles but then I found my range and hit the pickets a few times,” he smiled.
Mccosker, of course, is remembered for his stunning, selfless performance in the Centenary test in Melbourne in 1977. The gritty batsman was felled by a bouncer from Bob Willis and fell on his stumps but showed extraordinary courage to return to the crease in the second innings to help Australia record a memorable and historic win.
Rick’s younger brother Jim was Man of the Match in the first Dubbo Night Cricket final in the 1982/3 season.
“He won it for saving an RSL boundary that would have won the game and was carried off the field by his Rugby teammates!”
Stu of course found his way back out west after a stint in Newcastle and has been an incredible influence on the local Association. Apart from his tremendous batting record in the Whitney Cup and rep teams, he has mentored many promising juniors including State players Nathan Pilon and Don Nash and future Sydney first grade captains David Carson (UNSW) and David Taylor (Penrith).
Another of the Blues legends who played in the Tooheys match at Inverell was wicketkeeper, Steve “Stumper” Rixon.
All three men spoke of the bonds made through their cricketing careers and extended their support to the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program (RAMHP). THE Glenn Mcgrath Nets in Narromine are set to be completely overhauled following news of successful grant applications by the local Cricket Association.
Narromine Junior Cricket Association President Dwayne Kent says the nets have been in poor condition for a number of seasons, but with the injection of funds from the NSW World ICC T20 Legacy Fund and other sources, a refresh is on the way.
“Narromine Shire Council will receive $37,973 for the redevelopment of the Glenn Mcgrath Nets, which will be moved to Dundas Park. It is a massive boost for the game in our town. We may even be able to reform our senior competition once people begin to train in topclass facilities and realise the quality of our grounds,” Dwayne said.
If all goes to plan, Glenn Mcgrath might be home to send down a few on the redeveloped net complex.
“Pigeon” is a national treasure so any time he comes home, the whole town flocks to catch up. Hopefully he can show some of the youngsters how to bowl line and length and work out a batsman’s weaknesses.
Rick Mccosker, Steve “Stumper” Rixon and Stuart Webster at the Baggy Blues Dinner in Dubbo last month. PHOTO: DUBBO PHOTO NEWS
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