Perth Cricket Club – Toyota Cup 1995-96

15 years, it’s hard to believe it’s been that long, but 15 years has passed since the Perth Cricket Club won the Toyota Cup one day competition against Midland-Guildford under lights at the WACA. The day was the 3rd of March 1996. I can’t even remember the lead up games, or the semi final, but all I can remember was how excited I was to be selected in the team. I was a fresh faced 20 year old, first season playing first grade in Perth, and was pretty much shitting myself. We were missing Adam Gilchrist and Mark Atkinson who were on state duties (Midland had Tom Moody, Brendan Julian and Joe Angel on state duties as well!!), so the sides were evenly matched. We bowled first and after Midland got off to a solid 60 run opening stand, Brad Oldroyd came on and turned the game around. His figures of 10 overs, 3 for 14 took the momentum away from Midland. We bowled them out for 181.

I remember sitting there, waiting, I was batting at number 8. We kept losing wickets and could not sustain a solid partnership. We had a number of batsmen who got starts but didn’t go on with it. I remember we lost a wicket, good mate Ross Wintle, it was my time to bat. I remember walking out onto the WACA, nervously looking around at the lights, trying to get my eyes adjusted. I took my leg stump guard and faced up. First ball I played down to gully for none. 2nd ball I played a cover drive for three, I was away. My senior partner at the other end Doug Frame had been batting well. Our mid wicket discussion was him telling me not to panic (I was shitting myself)and that there were plenty of ones and two around, so just push the gaps. Next ball he tried to hit over mid off and holes out. Holy shit…….game on.

I can’t really recall too much of what happened, although one thing sticks in my mind. Bard Oldroyd had come out to bat, and he just said to me that he was absolutely shitting himself, no stranger there!! Now Brad had been playing for WA, but had been dropped from the squad during that season. His first delivery he swung like a rusty gate and missed the ball by about 2 feet!! 2 overs later he was on strike to Drew Parker, and played and missed every ball of the over. Parker slowly wandered down the wicket and expressed his frustrations at Oldroyd, to which Oldroyd responded simply with “Fuck off dickhead!!”

I just remember the last over when we won. Craig Hill was the bowler, left armer. He was angling them into my pads, and I missed two balls angled down the leg side. He then bowled a full ball which I clipped off my legs through backward square for four. Next ball was pitched up outside off, I swung hard, trying to hit it over the Lillee-Marsh stand, but instead got a thick outside edge and the ball flew down to the third man boundary for four!! We had just won, it was chaotic, unbelievable. All the boys and spectators from the club ran out onto the ground and celebrations started. It was an amazing feeling, one which will be pretty hard to top.

That night at the club was amazing, the feeling of success, achievement, the pressure had gone. 1980 was the last time the club had tasted success, so it was party time. All I remember was being one of the last standing, country style, and passing out on the couch in the club about 6 in the morning. I remember mum and dad coming to pick me up, or recover my lifeless body, when dad grabbed Monday’s West Australian and showed me inside the back page……..I’d made headlines!!

At the end of the day, it’s a team game. I would rather a premiership than an individual medal, as it’s something special that will stay with you forever, and it’s one thing that will be talked about for years to come when you get together with that group.

I miss the Fletcher Park days playing for the Perth Cricket Club, but cherish the fact that I was lucky enough to be involved.

 

 

 

 

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~ by Jamie Nicolaou on March 7, 2011.

7 Responses to “Perth Cricket Club – Toyota Cup 1995-96”

  1. MY HERO !!!!! πŸ™‚

    Hey great story Jamie and well done mate, what happened to the test career ?? πŸ™‚

    Doubt if they would find a space in the paper for that story today, let alone a picture.

    • Cheers Merv……test career, nothing!! Didn’t stay up there long enough!! I feel disappointed for the grade cricket, it’s the stepping stone to Shield cricket and it doesn’t get coverage at all.

  2. How many years did you play in Perth. I feel like shield cricket doesn’t get much coverage anymore as well

  3. Great story jamie really well written mate.

  4. No big night for you tonight then !!!

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