Just three days after turning 14 and becoming eligible to play senior cricket, Queensland Junior representative all-rounder Sam Stuchbery made a dream debut in Bundaberg top grade, playing alongside his Tallon Medal winning father Sean.
The duo each played leading hands as a much depleted Waves scored an incredible five-run victory over Brothers in their Rum City Foods Intra Cup clash at Salter Oval on Saturday.
Missing a string of their top players, including Michael Loader, Mitch Waters and Marty Maloney, Waves recovered from a perilous 5-43 to reach 182, thanks mainly to 18-year-old No. 3 Brendan Grills with 73 and fill-in club stalwart Mat Fleming (36).
But Sean also chipped in with 25, and Sam, batting at No. 10, faced 16 balls and scored an unbeaten 5, adding valuable extra runs with the tail.
Sean, who turned 40 last month, started with the club in under-10 and has played all of his Bundaberg cricket for the Blue and Golds, and he has been a fixture in their Division 1 sides since the age of 16, apart from a stint living and playing in England.
He won the Tallon Medal for the BCA Best and Fairest in 2018-19, before retiring from top grade, and he only plays part-time now, in Division 2 or 3.
This was his first Intra Cup game of the season.
But Sean showed he is still one of the best in the district, weaving his spin magic, removing Brothers’ batting trumps captain Mitch Parsons, Luke Solano, and Jarrod Laycock, who was spectacularly caught on the boundary by Mat Fleming, and featuring in the run out of the other danger man Matt Jackson, in a collapse of 4-20.
Sean went on to finish with 4-41 from nine overs, before Sam also made his mark with the ball, sending down 6.3 excellent overs and claiming the last two wickets, firstly Jack Gray, who had led a fightback with 44, then bowling Josh McInnes to secure victory.
Sean lost his devoted father and community and sporting champion father Mick to cancer midway through last year, but Sean and Sam were cheered on by his mother Dawn, wife Sophie, sister Kate and her husband Hadleigh.
Sean said while it “wasn’t a trophy winning day for me, it was better (than that, playing with Sam and featuring in a famous victory)”.
“Winning the Tallon was proof I could still play at 38 all season at a competitive level but today was better – we could have played Division 3 but (club president) Rhys Grills said we will back Sam to play 1’s and bat and bowl, not just be a 12th man,” Sean said.
“The only person that wasn’t there today was Dad, but after I dropped a diving catch off Sam the ball before we won, I’m sure Dad was watching over as Sam cleaned bowled Josh for us to win the game.”
Sam will return to under-16s when junior fixtures resume this Saturday after the holiday recess, but he will always be keen to answer the call to play at whatever level required.
After being one of Queensland’s best as they made it to the grand final of the School Sport Australian 12 years Boys Championships last season, the sky looks the limit for him, and he has high aspirations.
“Because Sam was born in York in England, once he’s older and Covid has settled, he wants to do what I did and play cricket in Yorkshire, but he can play as a local, not an overseas player,” Sean said.
Meanwhile, the win secures Waves, who are unbeaten in the competition, another minor title, and they are hungry to reclaim the premiership after suffering a shock loss to Brothers in last year’s grand final.
It was a red-letter day for Waves, also claiming a 10-wicket victory over Brothers in Division 3 with opener Mitch Wormington blazing an unbeaten 130 from just 71 balls, with a stunning 12 sixes and 11 fours.
In the other Intra Cup game of the round, Norths regular opener Blyton Prendergast, who came in at 2-3, unleashed, notching 117 from just 105 balls to guide them to a winning score of 7-234 against hosts Hervey Bay.
The hapless Bay were then routed for just 92 in 30.4 overs with 15-year-old left-arm seamer Matthew Parker the destroyer in his first grade bowling debut, claiming 4-14 from his four overs to snuff out the tail after they had been 5-78.
In the Aussie Bundy Big Bash on Friday night, Headland Pies claimed second place and a spot in the grand final with a 26-run victory over Betta Heat.
The Pies amassed 5-163, led by Matt Jackson, with an unbeaten half-century, opener Jesse Richardson (47) and Simon Kelly (44).
The Heat were never in the hunt in their chase, ending at 5-137 despite a signature 71 from 52 balls by No. 3 Arden Lankowski.
Bargara Parkrun celebrated their 3rd anniversary on Saturday with a big field of 236 participants, and David Wallace winning the 5km run for the seventh time in the 9 times he has run competitively on the course, in a time of 18min 18sec in a close race in which the top 10 all clocked sub-21 minutes.
The Bundaberg Parkrun attracted a field of 121, and 11-14 years competitor Archie Pratt, who won the Nightcliff Parkrun in Darwin in a field of 154 on 19th December, before returning to Bundaberg and winning the local event on Boxing Day, made it back-to-back wins on the course after having competed in the Redcliffe Parkrun the first three weeks of the New Year with a best there of third of 175 last Saturday week.
Here are all the results:
Aussie Bundy Big Bash
HEADLANDS PIES 5-163 (Matt Jackson 50no, Jesse Richardson 47, Simon Kelly 44, Vince Differ 4-0-15-2) d BETTA HEAT 5-137 (Arden Lankowski 71, Chris Duff 4-0-22-2).
Rum City Foods Intra Cup
NORTHS 7-234 (Blyton Prendergast 117, Julian Bond 35, Josh Winen 27, Brent Firth-Meldrum 9-1-35-3, Cornelis Du Plooy 5-0-28-2) d HERVEY BAY 92 (Matthew Parker 4-1-14-4, Damian Turner 6.1-4-7-2, Bruce Worthington 6-2-20-2).
WAVES 182 (Brendan Grills 73, Mat Fleming 36, Sean Stuchbery 25, Andy Porter 9-0-35-4, Matt Jackson 5.1-0-21-3, Brent Smith 7-3-16-2) d BROTHERS 177 (Jack Gray 44, Sean Stuchbery 9-0-41-4, Sam Stuchbery 6.3-0-25-2).
WAVES 0-124 (Jason De Papi 65no, Wayne Niekeric 53no) d BROTHERS 8-119 (Andy Porter 27, Matt Pozzebon 8-0-18-3, Jack Munro 6-0-20-3).
EAST BUNDY MAGPIES 9-206 (Priyantha Mudalige 90, Keegan Lankowski 42, Jaden Bond 8-1-38-3, Sumesh Jose 5-1-12-2) d NORTHS 157 (Shaun Pinney 39, Ben Davey 5.2-0-19-4, Ashley Pollitt 7-0-37-2).
WAVES 0-201 (Mitch Wormington 130no, Dan Unwin 50no) d BROTHERS 5-200 (David Boge 82no, Shannan Heycox 29, Chris Luz-Raymond 28, Jack Kleidon 7-1-38-2).
YMCA 6-151 (Karan Singh 35, Sam Cavanagh 25no, Cooper Rehbein 8-1-24-3, Adam McCoombe 8-1-23-2) d ISIS 149 (Josh Manitzsky 35, Jackson Rehbein 25, Darren Holznagel 5-0-15-4, Lex Webster 5-0-17-2, Greg Brady 7-0-31-2).
Results Bargara 3rd anniversary 5km event on Saturday – 236 participants – Top 10: 1 David Wallace 18.18, 2 Ben Rudd 18.42, 3 Craig Macklin 19.24, 4 Tom Parton 19.30, 5 5 Oliver Wightman 19.55, 6 Tom Laycock 20.29, 7 Troy Loeskow 20.32, 8 Peter How 20.45, 9 Phillip Wedel 20.54, 10 Damien Parton 20.58. First Female: (16th) Lauren Maher-Allan 22.21.
Bargara Parkrun is a free weekly timed event held every Saturday morning at 7am at Nielson Park Bargara. Newcomers always welcome. To register, go to https://www.parkrun.com.au/register/
Results Bundaberg 5km event on Saturday – 121 participants – Top 10: 1 Archie Pratt 19.45, 2 Steve Sabo 20.29, 3 Andrew Pratt 20.32, 4 Phil Hodge 21.48, 5 Laurie Stallan 21.49, 6 Adam Baxter 23.04, 7 Dimas Renaldi 23.07, 8 Jeff Irwin 23.13, 9 Stephen Jendra 23.55, 10 Unknown. First Female: (13th) Sandra Bunyoung 25.09.
Bundaberg Parkrun is a free weekly timed event held every Saturday morning at 7am at Queen’s Park, end of Hope Street. Newcomers always welcome. To register, go to https://www.parkrun.com.au/register/
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