Annual Australia Day Eve 20-20 match

27 January 2012

The Annual 20 / Twenty matches usually provide not only great interest but certainly drama - the 2012 match was to be no different.

Annual Australia Day Eve 20-Twenty Match
St Bernards Old Collegians Sporting Clubs
Footballers Vs Cricketers
Wednesday, 25th January, 2012

This 2012 match was proved to be no different – the more experienced cricketers were absent on a sabbatical to the Adelaide Test. The challenge for the 'Footballers' were to overcome a very keen, young group of 'Cricketers' who were keen to ensure the continued success for the Cricketers'.

With usual difficulty in pulling the 'Footballers' together it was left to Andrew Merrington to lead the 'Footballers' this year – Andrew of course is not unfamiliar to this summer sport.

Unavailability and injury had already hit the 'Footballers' and with such legends as Mitchell, Holland, Madden. Liberatore, Garth and D-Mac missing it was left to Merro to provide the spark for his charges. What was to follow seemed to match the to-ing and fro-ing of the Australia – India Series. Maybe to put it in a better light there was to be a performance which matched the exploits of more recognised cricketers involved in 'The Big Bash.'


Winning the toss the Cricketers took the opportunity to bat.

Opener Nick Serrano was the steady influence for the Cricketers as Michael Liccardo snared 3 quick wickets – on a hat trick in his 2nd over. Nick Serrano had carried his team to 56 before being dismissed for a well earned 23. His partnership with Kev O'Connell (32) seemed to be setting up a sizeable total for their team. It was at this stage where some good bowling by Andrew van Meel and Dan Riley – supported through some good catches by James Riley and Michael Liccardo – set the team up with the opportunity to restrict the Cricketers. Enter the Footballers captain. Ball in hand and after 3 for 9 he finished his spell well satisified he had not lost any of his skills over the many years in retirement. It was left to Danny Byrne to close out the innings with 2 quick wickets. With Craig Osborne stranded on 17 he had promised a lot more but others, once again, struggled to stay with him

Bowling : Andrew Merrington 3-0-3-9, Michael Liccardo 3-0-3-13,
Danny Byrne2.1-0-2-13.
Fielding James Riley 2 catches
SCORE : Cricketers : 17.1 Overs ... 10 for 100

Well satisfied with their efforts the footballers were quickly in trouble as Tom Chrystie set about tearing through the opposition. His 3 overs accounted for the first 4 wickets – 3 wickets in his fist over and on a hat trick with the last two balls – with the Footballers at 4 for 10 the 100 runs seemed nothing more than a distant mirage.

Enter Merro!!!

Late inclusion Paddy Moloney – 22 runs : 1-4 & 2-6s - provided great support for Merro as the pair put on a valuable 48 runs and seemed to set the 'Footballers' in a much stronger position. Andrew van Meel sat back and watched Mero clinically dismantle the Cricketers and with his departure the score read 6 for 65 Little did any of the large band of supporter realise this was to be the last wicket to fall as Merro, continuing his 'Big Bash' form with James Riley (2no), quickly closed out the game for the 'Footballers. '

In the end

The summary from the Cricket Club President, Anthony Jordan best highlighted the day – 'really it was the Cricket Club against Andrew Merrington – he was magnificent !'

Batting : Andrew Merrington – runs to match his season 2011goalkicking exploits – 71 runs ... 8-4s & 3-6s in 11 overs
SCORE : Footballers : 14.5 Overs ... 7 for 107

RESULT : Footballers win by 3 wickets
Man-of-the-Match : Andrew Merrington

Scores correct ... Umpire : Terry Davis / Scorer : Rex Bennett.

The 'North Suburban Sports Club Trophy' was presented to Football Operations Paul Garth who gratefully accepted the trophy from Cricket Club President Anthony Jordan.


The Footballers missed out on the 'free entertainment after the match which was provided by the Cricket Club. However Cricket Club sponsors in Mel Beyer & Ian Wheeler were joined by Jim Taylor, Peter Riley, John Radcliffe and Deb Marinier and Glenn Scarborough.

Congratulations to those footballers who made themselves available.

However, except for Paddy Moloney, they left early and missed out on the 'free entertainment' after the match which is provided each year by the Cricket Club. Great to see Cricket Club sponsors in Mel Beyer & Ian Wheeler were joined by Jim Taylor, Peter Riley, John Radcliffe, Deb Marinier and Glenn Scarborough along with the mysterious horse owner and tipster Kevin Davey.

Boys ... the bar's manager Grant has returned and certainly has taken on a new persona in the form of 'Chopper Reid'(remains of a fancy dress birthday party) . I guess it means when he says 'the bars closed!' then there will be no arguments

John Raffle