Moonee Valley's Mister Afternoon Tea, "Postcode" Peter Smith played his 200th game for the club in the opening week of the 2018/19 season, and is to be congratulated for sticking to his sport despite injury setbacks and weekend work commitments.
At left: The Sevenths team for Peter Smith's 200th game. L-R. Back - Nigel Cowan, Michael Ozbun, Ben Thomas, Matt Esmore, Shiwantha Kumara, Dishnaka Manoj, Stephen Esmore, Jim Polonidis. Front - Lachlan Smith, Peter Smith, Geoff Smith.
Pete has taken swags of wickets in every grade from the Seconds down, and celebrated his milestone with the inclusion of brother Geoff and nephew Lachlan in the team.
Geoff and Lach live in Maryborough, but were keen to make the trip to play alongside Pete in the Sevenths for the October 7 fixture.
Postcode has been a stalwart for our afternoon teas for a decade, more recently doing the Sunday-only teas because of Saturday work commitments, and is always happy to put his hand up to support our club.
Peter first played for Moonee Valley in 2001/02, having followed younger brother Geoff across after they both played a lot of cricket together at Surrey Hills.
He's taken 303 wickets with his wily off-spin - the ninth-most wickets of anyone at our club - and while his batting his reaped him much more than 700 runs, he's always happy to be selected down the order.
Pete's best bowling is 6/11, and he's taken seven five-wicket hauls for the club.
For more pictures, click HERE
THE COACH HAS LANDED
Moonee Valley Cricket Club's new coach Mark Grenville touched down in Australia from Guyana on September 12, and wasted no time in meeting, greeting and assessing players.
Mark and partner Andrya spent their first evening back in Australia in meetings at club sponsor the Moonee Ponds Club, receiving and digesting information on the players that we expect will take us to the top rungs this season - both in the Firsts and the other grades.
At right: Mark Grenville and Andrya at the Moonee Ponds Club.
Mark will also play an important role in the development of our juniors and our younger up-and-coming seniors.
Mark has played at high levels in the West Indies, England and Australia, and has also played in the United States and Canada along his cricket journey, which has netted him more than 12,000 runs and 1300 wickets.
Growing up in the West Indies, he played in the Under 19s and also played 14 first class matches for Guyana in the Red Stripe Cup/Shell Shield - the equivalent of Australia's Sheffield Shield.
Mark has Level 1 and Level 2 Australian coaching certificates, which will help him share his skill and experience across all our grades.
He is excited about being able to further improve the players in their late teens and early 20s in our higher grades, and also assist in developing our junior grade skills.
Mark is now an Australian citizen. He has been in Guyana for the past year doing voluntary youth coaching - a promise he made to return and help out when he was at the height of his own career.
He believes players need to enjoy training, and promises a varied and interesting program to ensure we get the best out of our sessions - with our outdoor training starting at Ormond Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays commencing September 18.
He was Guyana Cricketer of the Year in 1986. Playing for Guyana, he counted Test stars Roger Harper, Colin Croft, Carl Hooper and Roy Fredericks among his teammates.
His opponents were no less daunting, lining up against a plethora of stars including Sir Viv Richards, Phil Simmonds, Richie Richardson, Ian Bishop, Malcolm Marshall, Curtly Ambrose, Courtney Walsh, Winston Benjamin and Shivnarine Chanderpaul.
The standard didn't get much easier when Mark played Minor Counties cricket in England in the 1980s and 1990s, with teammates and opponents including Australian captain Mark Taylor, Chris Matthews, Darren Berry, Chris Old and Madan Lal.
Mark moved to Australia in the mid 90s and coached and captain-coached teams in the southern suburbs of Melbourne, including Chelsea in the old VTCA.
His best bowling performance is 9/28 against Honley Cricket Club in England and his best batting is 175 against Guyana Police Force in Guyana.
Above: Meet and greet: L-R Raj Aiyappan, Allan Cumming, Firsts captain Jack Newman, coach Mark Grenville and vice president Mark Gauci.
Our Winter Comp awards
The awards night for our 2018 Mid Year Cricket Association season was held on September 9, and we got a chance to celebrate a season that showed plenty of promise but came up just short.
We offer our thanks to our long-term winter comp player Kern Kapoor and his family for their hospitality yet again for our presentation night at their North Fitzroy restaurant L'Osteria.
Matthew Esmore won the Most Valuable Player award for a stellar season, netting 14 wickets @ 15.5 and 210 runs.
At right: Our winter warriors: L-R Kern Kapoor with his bowling award, Matt Esmore with his MVP medallion, Richard Zammit with his fielding award and skipper Michael Ozbun with Akshat Sehgal's batting trophy.
Kern Kapoor won the bowling award on averages, with nine wickets @ 12.
Akshat Sehgal took out the batting trophy with 194 runs @ 48.8.
And we poached Richard Zammit from St Bernards's to play winter comp with us and he won the fielding award, both for efforts in the field and behind the stumps when required.
For more pictures from the night, click HERE
LATEST NEWS: JACK NEWMAN IS FIRSTS CAPTAIN
The Moonee Valley Cricket Club has appointed young gun Jack Newman as First Eleven captain.
Jack was part of the young group which got us through to the VTCA North A Grand Final last season, and is keen to take the team to the next level.
Aged 19, Jack has the exuberance of youth plus a wise head, having played senior cricket for the past six years and taken every opportunity to learn from experienced players.
One of the quickest bowlers at the Club and a steady middle order bat, Jack leads from the front. He has experience as captain ad vice-captain of North West Metropolitan Cricket Association representative teams.
Jack's appointment was confirmed by the Committee on September 11, taking over from Daniel Comande, who had to step down due to a change in circumstances.
Jack's first outing as Valley Firsts skipper is a pre-season game against Barooga on September 15.
He has played at Moonee Valley since the Under 10s.
And Wardy gets up for the Seconds
Moonee Valley's 2012/13 Second Eleven captain, Stephen Ward, has been reappointed to the role for 2018/19, following intensive interviews and rigorous selection discussions.
Senior training - it's on NOW
Moonee Valley Cricket Club runs senior outdoor training at Ormond Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5pm.
We have seven senior sides - four on turf and three on hard wicket, and a range of Saturday and Sunday games to suit all options. Ormond Park is in Pattison St, Moonee Ponds.
Anyone interested in joining our successful and progressive club can phone Club President Charlie Walker on 0411 705 381.
Interested juniors can phone Junior Co-ordinator Peter Pickering on 0414 800 145, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone Kevin Gardiner on 0417536 896.
Main Club contact details:
* Charlie Walker - President 0411 705 381; 9370 1802