Old Geelong First XVIII win Division 1 premiership
Old Geelong Cricket Club has won its first premiership in only its 5th season.
Finishing the home and away season in 4th position with 3 powerful clubs who had all recently won flags, the first XI boys played beautifully in the semi final to defeat Melbourne High (last years premiers) and then bowled beautifully to restrict Old Xaviers powerful batting line up to 151 with Nick Smith (2 for 19 off 8 overs), Meyrick Buchanan (2 for 23 off 7.4 overs), James Ratcliffe (2 for 27 off 8 overs) and Jamie Harrison (2 for 37 off 8 overs) the wicket takers.
However Grand Finals are rarely won easily and the Old Xav's bowlers bowled with great discipline and at one stage had us 3 for 2 runs. At 4 for 37 Henry Weddell joined Tim Bayles and the two of them started to put together the first partnership of any substance before Baylesy was stumped while trying to take on the Goss. Bertie Weddell then joined his brother and the two of them were looking in good touch until Old Xav's captain Matt Cosgrove had Bertie LBW.
Shortly after this we lost Richie Herd and with the score 7 for 75 and less than 15 overs remaining things were not looking good.
Henry kept his cool though and he was joined by Jimmy Ratcliffe, who showed great courage and determination and despite needing 6 an over the two of them put together another partnership which got us back on track, until Rat lost his wicket.
This brought Cam Russell to the wicket. Its fair to say Rusty's batting has not had the opportunities to reach its potential and he has struggled to middle the ball as he use to.
But "Cometh the hour cometh the man" and needing 7 runs off the last over with Rusty facing he rocked back to a moderately short ball and pulled it past short mid wicket sending it to the boundary. He then got off strike and Henry finished off a fine innings finishing on 60 odd and winning the game with 2 balls to spare.
In nearly 30 years of playing cricket this was one of the greatest wins I have ever seen. Not only that but I am pretty sure we are the first club in our time to win from 4th position and the two teams we beat (Melbourne High School Old Boys and Old Xavier) are very good teams.
For this group of guys to win this flag is something that can never be taken away from them or the club and will be be the inspiration for players in seasons to come.