Sydney University opener Greg Mail now stands alone as the most prolific century-maker in Sydney Grade cricket history after crafting an unbeaten 126 in Sydney University’s first innings win over Eastern Suburbs in the opening round of the 2012-13 season at Waverley Oval.
Mail, the O’Reilly Medal winner for the 2011-12 season, now has 37 First Grade centuries, surpassing legends Warren Bardsley and Victor Trumper, who each scored 36 First Grade centuries.
The prolific right-hander is also the highest run scorer in the 119 years of Sydney grade cricket, a record he set in 2011-12 when he ended the season with 12,438 runs, having moved past Greg Haynes’ career tally of 12,354.
Mail is also the only player in Sydney Grade Cricket history to score double centuries in consecutive first grade matches. Four seasons ago he scored 214 not out against Randwick-Petersham and backed that up the next weekend with 212 against Northern District.
The back-to-back double hundreds put him in elite company. Only two other players had passed 200 twice in the same season: Don Bradman made 246 and 201 in the 1931-32 season, and former NSW player Norbet Phillips made 243 not out and 200 in the 1929-30 season. But neither made them in consecutive matches.
While he has been a prolific scorer at grade level, Mail also enjoyed a healthy, 10-year first-class career with NSW before announcing his retirement midway through the 2009-10 season. After making his debut in 1999, he played 72 matches for the Blues, scoring 4085 runs at an average of 32.16, including nine centuries – one in each innings against South Australia – and a highest score of 176. He was a member of the Sheffield Shield-winning sides of 2002-03, 2004-05 and 2007-08.
Mail, who has four 1000-run seasons under his belt, must be at short odds to make that five as Sydney University push for a third consecutive First Grade title in the two-day Belvidere Cup competition.
Sydney University went to stumps at 0-29 on day one after Easts had won the toss and batted on their home track. Thanks to Will Somerville (4-44) and Tim Ley (2-26), the hosts were all out for 191, with Rob Watts (64 not out) Matthew Yiend (58) and Jarryd Blake (37) the main contributors.
Scott Henry made the most of his short time at the crease, cracking 22 of the 29 at the end of the opening day. While he was on duty for NSW in their Sheffield Shield draw with Tasmania on the second day of the grade match, Mail took over the scoring duties, cracking 13 boundaries and two sixes in his 218-minute knock. The Students ended day two with 4-218 to take first innings points.
Sydney University Second Grade also started the defence of their 2011-12 title on a solid note, collecting outright points against Eastern Suburbs at Sydney University No.2 Oval. After racking up 293, the Students dismissed Easts for 62 (Ben Joy 8-30) and 95 (Ben joy 2-15).
Eastern Suburbs Third Grade collected first innings points over Sydney University at Snape Park, while Sydney University earned first innings points in Fourth Grade at St Paul’s College Oval and Fifth Grade at St Andrew’s College Oval. And the news was good from Balmoral Oval where Sydney University defeated Mosman on the first innings in the opening round of the Metropolitan Cup.
Sydney University will be up against St George in Round 2 on October 6 and 13, with First Grade at Hurstville Oval.
It will be an all-student affair in Metropolitan Cup, with Sydney University and UNSW doing battle in a two-day round at St Paul’s College Oval.
First Grade: Sydney University 4-218 (Greg Mail 126 not out, Mark Faraday 34 not out, Scott Henry 22 retired not out; Tas Yazdani 3-48) d Eastern Suburbs 191 (Rob Watts 64 not out, Matthew Yiend 58, Jarryd Blake 37; Will Somerville 4-44, Tim Ley 2-26, Greg Mail 2-38) on the first innings at Waverley Oval. Toss: Eastern Suburbs. Batted first: Eastern Suburbs. Points: Sydney University 6, Eastern Suburbs 0.
Second Grade: Sydney University 293 (Josh Toyer 76, Adam Theobald 62, Liam Robertson 49, Ed Arnott 26; Jameson Coutts 5-55, Angus Palmer 2 65) d Eastern Suburbs 62 (Puru Rathore 35 not out; (Ben Joy 8-30, Nigel Cowell 1-3) and 95 (Jacob Taucher 25 not out, Robert Wilson 22; Ben Joy 2-15, Nigel Cowell 2-20) outright at Sydney University No.2 Oval. Toss: Eastern Suburbs. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Sydney University 10, Eastern Suburbs 0.
Third Grade: Eastern Suburbs 5-166 (Nathan Loveday 47 not out, Trent Griffiths 29, Mark Andersson 24, Ken Kurien 20; Charles Cull 2-43) d Sydney University 165 (Brendan Pryke 62, Jack Hill 43; Timothy Brown 3-56, Harry Brooks 2-19, Samuel Powell 2-28) on the first innings at Snape Park. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Eastern Suburbs 6, Sydney University 0.
Fourth Grade: Sydney University 8(dec)-342 (Alex Mihalyka 124, Matt Skinner 70, Stuart McLean 42; Naveen Chowdhury 3-44) d Eastern Suburbs 153 (James Oliver 86, Brad Pettitt 36; Darius Visser 2-18; Nicholas Dunford 2-50) on the first innings at St Paul’s College Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Sydney University 6, Eastern Suburbs 0.
Fifth Grade: Sydney University 6(dec)-348 (Charles Arcus 105, Harrison Watt 79, Jarrad Waterlow 60 not out, Sam Mahabady 39, Andrew Deveraj 37; George Black 2-14) d Eastern Suburbs 112 (Angas MacDonald 33, Brendan Royall 27; Ryan Danne 4-10, Christopher Campbell 3-26, Sam Mahabady 3-40) and 2-132 (Brendan Royall 61 not out, Andrew Rhodes 53; Kim Garling 2-30) on the first innings at St Andrew’s College, Oval.
Sydney University 6(dec)-341 (Jay Blamey 82 not out, Stuart Hastings 74, Edward Turner 42, Timothy Croft 42) v Mosman 252 (Mark |Ham 80, Jason Lawless 70; Jimmy Kazaglis 3-40, Henry St John 2-40) on the first innings at Balmoral Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University. Points: Sydney University 6, Mosman 0.