Bede and Ozzie reach their mark - at last!
Bede Gannon and Michael Ozbun reached significant milestones in the Round 11 Sevenths game at Ormond Park, but the achievements were a long time coming.
Both Ozzie and Bede had a chance to reach the games milestones before Christmas, but events conspired to delay them.
Bede played his 150th senior game in the January 14 Sevenths game, while Michael brought up his 100th - a fine achievement for a US-born sportsman who had never seen our game seven years ago.
At right: Michael Ozbun (left) with 100 games and Bede Gannon with 150 brought up important milestones.
Bede had started the season on 149 games and was due to play in one of the early rounds, but had to pull out due to a prior engagement and them went overseas for several months.
Ozzie had a spot lined up in the Sevenths the last round before Christmas but a personal commitment intervened. He had another go at his 100th match the first round back on January 6, but the games were all cancelled due to extreme heat.
He had a third go of it on January 13 - in his role as captain of our Second Eleven - but play was abandoned without a ball being bowled when Caroline Springs failed to prepare a wicket.
But it was fourth time lucky the next day, when Ozzie lined up with Bede for a double milestone celebration.
In another games achievement, Sixths captain Paddy Shelton played his 50th game on January 13 - the first member of our "RMIT Crew" recruited in 2014/15 to reach the mark. A couple of Paddy's teammates are nipping at his heels.
And former First Eleven captain Mark Gauci, playing with Bede and Ozzie in the Sevenths, took his 250th wicket.
Our January promotion - with Grill'd Moonee Ponds
Moonee Valley Cricket Club has a promotion going throughout January with the Grill'd Moonee Ponds restaurant.
As part of the company's Local Matters promotion, our club and two other local organisations are vying for a $300 cash main prize. The more our members participate, the greater our chance of picking up the handy addition to our budget bottom line.
For more details on what you can do to kick this along, go to our "Latest News" bar on the right side of this page.
A Christmas welcome for our Freddie
Above: Welcoming back the Prodigal son. L-R Mark Gauci, Jack Newman, Freddie Priestley, Matt Thomas,
Benjamin Pearson and Michael Ozbun. Front - Bede Gannon, Ben Thomas and Daniel Comande.
Moonee Valley welcomed back a favorite son when Freddie Priestley breezed in to Melbourne on Christmas Day.
Freddie played a season at the Valley as a teenager in 2014/15, before returning home to England. But he came back to Australia earlier this month to follow the fortunes of his country in the Ashes, and came to Melbourne for a week for the Boxing Day Test.
At left: Freddie's Australian family: Back - Benjamin Pearson and Charlie Walker. Front - Caroline, Adele and Nigel Walker and Freddie Priestley.
He brought UK teammate Benjamin Pearson across from the west, where he's playing for Fremantle. With the Christmas break, it was perfect time for the two mates to come across to the Fourth Test.
Freddie and Benjamin were lined up to stay with the Walker family, where Freddie lived in his season across here.
They also found time to go down to the Ormond Park pavilion in the late afternoon of Christmas Day, to catch up with past teammates and to have one last look at the old pavilion before our redevelopment takes place.
While we didn't get a chance to get Freddie into the whites on his short trip to Melbourne, he's assessing his future options after a planned university course back home. And while we had the opportunity we also put a bit of work into Benjamin as a future Valleys player.
Nate Wolland's incredible
Nate Wolland wrote himself into the Moonee Valley record books with his magnificent innings of 210 not out to steer the Thirds home to an important victory on December 16.
It was even more incredible in that Nate wasn't even meant to play that weekend, but stepped in and helped out to ensure the Thirds had a full complement.
Our First Eleven captain in 2015/16 and 2015/17, Nate has been opening the bowling in the Ones all season, but pulled out of the last round before Christmas because of an ankle injury.
At right - Nate still had a spring in his step when he came off at the end of his 210 not out.
Even though he has only batted once this season, for 3 not out at No. 11, Nate was happy to step in to help out the thirds as a batsman - and stand-in skipper Ben Skok gave him the responsibility of opening.
And Nate didn't let him down, steering the side to victory over Barnawartha North in the Mercantile Cricket Association with an over to spare.
Nate's innings was the third-highest in the history of the Moonee Valley Cricket Club, behind only Peter Brear's 218 in 1994/95 and Matt Gauci's 211 not out against Coolaroo - ironically also a December 16 one-day fixture, in 2006.
Our only other 200-plus score was Dean Lawson's 205 not out in 2014/15.
Nate hadn't given any prior indication of a latent batting talent, scoring on 113 runs in his Moonee Valley career, which started in 2014/15. Nate's highest previous summer score was just 16, while he excelled with a high of 28 in winter comp.
His knock was reminiscent of Australian fast bowler Jason Gillespie, who scored a double century against Bangladesh in 2006 - ironically his last Test. Hopefully Nate's got a few more games left in him!
Wags at our club have told Nate that his double ton is the highest score by a Kiwi in Australia since Ross Taylor hit 290 in the Perth Test in 2015/16.
Above: Nate is mobbed by his winning teammates. L-R: Back - Ben Skok, Jacob De Niese, Peter Golding, Daniel Ayers, Azhar Mohammed Khan, Justin Trowell, Ian Denny. Front - Nam Nguyen, Joshua Norsetter, Nate Wolland and Brendan Rhodes.
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Valley training here's all the details
Moonee Valley Cricket Club trains at Ormond Park on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. 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.
We still have spots available in our senior teams. Anyone interested in joining our successful and progressive club can phone coach Lou Raffaele on 0450 181 948, or Club President Charlie Walker on 0411 705 381.
Interested juniors can phone Junior Co-ordinator Peter Pickering on 0414 800 145 or email him at email@example.com
Main Club contact details:
* Charlie Walker - President 0411 705 381; 0409 237 543; 9370 1802
* Peter Golding - Treasurer 0419 009 721
* Simon Thornton - Vice President 0417 570 779
* Peter Pickering - Junior Co-ordinator 0414 800 145 firstname.lastname@example.org
* Channa DeSilva - Director of Junior Cricket 0402 833 592
For more contacts, see " Office bearers & Officials " under "Club News & Info" at the top of the page
Last updated: January 15, 2018.
For more of our history, including our Premierships, click HERE
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