07.04.08 – Nick Bailey 

Sydney University Seconds are the Sydney Grade Cricket premiers, defeating Bankstown on first innings in the final at Hurstville Oval on the weekend.

Centuries from Matthew Phelps and Adam Theobald, alongside a 6 wicket haul from Marty Paskal, were the standout efforts in a brilliant all round performance from the Students.

Bankstown captain Dean Magee won the toss and elected to bat first, a decision he soon regretted as Marty Paskal ripped through the Bankstown top order to leave them 3-8 after just a few overs play, and soon after the boys from the west were looking unlikely to break into triple figures at 5-48.

They rallied late however, to eventually be all out for 201 from 64.5 overs, with the highlight of their batting performance a fighting 9th wicket stand of 47 from Clinton Price (38) and Darryn Bull (17 not out).

Marty Paskal took his second 5 wicket haul of the season, claiming 6-60 from his 20.5 overs, taking his 2007/08 season total to a career best 23 wickets. In support Josh Toyer took 2-43 from his 14 overs, whilst Tim Ley and Kevin Desai claimed a wicket apiece.

Sydney University then put together their best batting performance of the season to post 3-332 from 104 overs, winning the match on first innings and erasing the pain of last year’s Grand Final loss to Mosman.

A magnificent opening stand of 117 from Sutha Sivapalan and Matthew Phelps laid the foundations for Uni’s massive total, Sivapalan falling just one run short of his half century when he was caught behind off the bowling of Clinton Price, who finished with 2-76 from his 30 overs and was the best of the Bankstown bowlers.

There was little else for Bankstown to smile about, though, as Phelps then put together a 98 run partnership with Adam Theobald to leave Uni at 2-215 when he departed the crease, having smacked a masterful 102.

Theobald picked up where Phelps left off, finishing on 125 not out when the match ended, capping off an outstanding season where he scored 423 runs at an average of 60.43, with a stunning strike rate of 93.38. Captain Dave Butchart (26) combined with Theobald for a 69 run third wicket partnership, before Mitchell Cook rounded off the innings with 14 not out as Uni sailed past 300.

The match rounded off a very successful summer for Sydney University cricket, with teams in all grades making the finals this season, and the Second and Sixth grade sides claiming their respective premierships.  The awards and accolades for the cricket club didn’t end there, as Stuart Clark picked up the 2007 SUSF Sportsman of the Year award midweek, whilst Michael Cameron received the 2008 Vice Chancellor’s Sport Scholarship.