Students push for back-to-back Belvidere Cups

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Sydney University First XI will be chasing back-to-back Belvidere Cups when they take on Randwick-Petersham in the three-day final of the Sydney Grade cricket competition starting at Bankstown Oval this Friday.

The Students won their way through to the final with a 35-run first innings win over North Sydney in their semi-final at Sydney University No.1 Oval at the weekend.

All-rounder Ian Moran backed up his double century from the preliminary final with 70 against North Sydney, while Scott Henry (56) and David Miller (29) helped Sydney University to 232.

Stuart Clark (4-46), Tim Ley (2-23) and Stuart MacGill (2-55) then rolled the visitors for 197 to set a rematch of the 2010-11 final between the Randypetes and the Scholars.

The final, which will start at 10am on Friday, will feature three Test cricketers in Simon Katich, Usman Khawaja and Nathan Hauritz, along with NSW and Big Bash player Scott Coyte in the Randwick-Petersham ranks, while Sydney University will field Test players Stuart Clark and Stuart MacGill, along with former NSW representative  Greg Mail, who is now the highest run-getter in the history of Sydney Grade Cricket,  Scott Henry, the Player of the Finals Series in 2010-11, and Ian Moran,  who is averaging 272 in the finals series.

Sydney University teams will also contest the Second and Fifth grade finals, making it the second time in the club’s history that three teams have contested the finals – the last time being the 2008-09 season.

It might have been five teams through to the finals, but Fourth Grade lost to Manly-Warringah and the Metropolitan Cup side lost to Gordon in their semi-final matches.

Sydney University Second Grade will meet Manly-Warringah at North Sydney Oval in another three-day final. The match will feature long-time Sydney University player Adam Theobald, who broke a 101-year-old record at the weekend when he cracked 226 in the first innings preliminary semi-final win over Northern District.

Theobald’s knock bettered the previous highest Second Grade innings of 211, set by CJ Tozer in the 1910-11 season.

Sydney University Fifth Grade will meet Gordon in a two-day final at Sydney University No.1 Oval on Saturday and Sunday.

The selection of the venue is a compliment to curator Ray Hunt and his grounds staff. While First and Second grades have to be played in neutral grounds, the Sydney Cricket Association give themselves the option of selecting the best grounds for the lower grades.

Meanwhile, Universities Women’s Cricket Club finished a successful season with premiership (and minor premiership) in the Rivers (Junior) side, while the Brewers Cup  (Under 17) side made the semi-finals in the T20 competition and the final of the 40-over competition; Third Grade made the semi-finals in the T20 and 40-over competitions and finished third in both; and First Grade made the semi-finals in the T20 and 50 over competitions and finished runners-up in the T20 and runners-up in the 50-over minor premiership.


Sydney Grade competition – Semi-finals

First Grade:  Sydney University 232 (Ian Moran 70, Scott Henry 56, David Miller 29; Nicholas Bills 5-60, James Campbell 2-27) d North Sydney 197 (Tim Affleck 56, Scott Rodgie 37, Robert Aitken 27, Daniel Hughes 24; Stuart Clark 4-46, Tim Ley 2-23, Stuart MacGill 2-55) on the first innings at Sydney University No.1 Oval. Toss: North Sydney. Batted first: Sydney University. Final: Sydney University v Randwick-Petersham at Bankstown Oval. Three-day match starting at 10am this Friday, March 30.

Second Grade: Sydney University 432 (Adam Theobald 226, Liam Robertson 68, Tom Kierath 67, Michael Culkoff 41; Dean Crawford 4-77) d Northern District 178 (Matthew Philips 48, Justin Moore 35, Chris Burnett 32, Chris Green 25; Ben Joy 5-41, Kevin Desai 2-38) on the first innings at Waverley Oval. Toss: Northern District. Batted first: Sydney University. Final: Sydney University v Manly-Warringah at North Sydney Oval. Three-day final starting at 10am this Friday, March 30.

Fourth Grade: Manly-Warringah 151 (Geoff Isaacs 24, Louis Anderson 22, Maxwell Burgess 22, Warren Evans 20; Charles Cull 4-24, Darius Visser 2-22, Brendan Pryke 2-27) and 1-164 (Edward Burgess 115 not out, Geoff Isaacs 27 not out) d Sydney University 112 (Charles Cull 25, Alex Logan 26; Warren Evans 5-35, Michael Lindsay 4-31) and 9(dec)-202 (James Larkin 48, Jimmy Kazaglis 36, Alex Logan 25, Ash Cowan 22; Warren Evans 6-41) outright at Sydney University No.2 Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University. Final: Sutherland v Manly-Warringah at Waverley Oval.

Fifth Grade: Sydney University 190 (Simon Cowan 50, Sam Mahabady 32, Matt Skinner 28; Nick Saady 3-44, Rob Huxley 2-9, Samuel Muir 2-35) and 1-133 (Matt Skinner 58 not out, Andrew Deveraj 55 not out) d Randwick-Petersham 115 (Mitchell Jones 28, Nick Saady 21; Timothy Croft 5-30, Rowan Fessey 2-37)  on the first innings at St Paul’s College Oval. Final: Sydney University v Gordon at Sydney University No.1 Oval.

Metropolitan Cup – Semi-final

Gordon 297 (James Dedman 80, David Millar 49, Jason Leiboff 33; Greg Metcalfe 2-46, Steven Green 2-56) d Sydney University 145 (Sameer Malla 33, Steven Green 29; Deva Nirthanakumaran 3-14, Iqbal Ahmed 3-32, David Leiboff 3-34) on the first innings at Chatswood Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Gordon. Minor Premiers: Sydney University. Final: Gordon v Penrith at Chatswood Oval.