Sydney University opener Scott Henry kicked off the Sydney Grade cricket season with an unbeaten 200 when the Students met Eastern Suburbs in a two-day fixture at Waverley Oval on Saturday.

In an innings that reminded NSW selectors he is still available, Henry hit 27 boundaries and two sixes in his 378-minute occupation as Sydney University finished the day at 3-383 off 96 overs after winning the toss.

Henry and No.3 Greg Mail shared a 246-run first-wicket partnership, with Mail’s 105 in 236 minutes including 14 boundaries.

When Mail hit an unbeaten 126 in the opening round of the 2012-13 season, against the same opponent at the same ground, he became the most prolific century-maker in Sydney grade cricket history.

That century saw him surpass legends Victor Trumper and Warren Bardsley, who each scored 36 First Grade tons. Trumper had made his 36th First Grade hundred in the opening round of the 1914-15 season, while Bardsley joined him on 36 centuries during the 1932-33 summer.

Mail scored one more century during the 2012-13 season, with Saturday’s effort taking him to 39 First Grade tons. He is also the highest runscorer in the 120 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. And having racked up a modest – by his lofty standards – 601 runs in 2012-13, he now has 13,144 First Grade runs at 52.52

During the 2010-11 season Mail became the first player in Sydney Grade cricket to score double centuries in consecutive first grade matches when he amassed 212 against Northern District, following his 214 not out in the previous round against Randwick-Petersham.

The Sydney University skipper’s 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. Trumper holds the record for most First Grade double centuries with six. Bardsley has four, while Mail, Grant Lambert, Tommy Andrews and Norbert Phillips have three each.

As an opener with Sydney University, Mail has enjoyed several massive stands, including 324 with Will Hay against Manly-Warringah in the 2009-10 season, and 310 with David Miller against Northern District the same season.

Mail batted at No.3 on Saturday to make way for new signing Ryan Carters, who scored 36 in a 72-run opening stand with Henry. Carters is a former Victorian wicketkeeper batsman.

While the Students welcomed Carters to the ranks, they have lost the services of prolific all-rounder Ian Moran, who has moved to Eastern Suburbs this season.


Sydney Men’s Grade Cricket competition – Round 1 (Two-day matches)

First Grade: Sydney University 3-383 off 96 overs (Scott Henry 200 not out, Greg Mail 105, Ryan Carters 36; Jacob Taucher 2-72) v Eastern Suburbs; stumps, day one at Waverley Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University.

Second Grade: Sydney University 308 off 97 overs (Adam Theobald 94, Alex Logan 54, Darius Visser 53; Mike Peacock 5-96, Samuel Powell 2-63) v Eastern Suburbs; stumps, day one at Sydney University No.2 Oval. Toss: Sydney University. Batted first: Sydney University.

Third Grade: Eastern Suburbs 196 off 69.3 overs (Benjamin Bryant 49, Tom Cooper 42, Tim Doyle 33) v Sydney University 2-15 off 8 overs; stumps, day one at Kensington Oval. Toss: Eastern Suburbs. Batted first: Eastern Suburbs.

Fourth Grade: Eastern Suburbs 193 off 63.4 overs (Michael Quinn 92, Jack Remond 38; William Clayton 3-24, Hayden Kerr 2-17) v Sydney University 2-40 (Ryan Danne 26 not out) stumps, day one at St Paul’s College Oval. Toss: Eastern Suburbs. Batted first: Eastern Suburbs.

Fifth Grade: Eastern Suburbs 144 off 57 overs (no details available) v Sydney University 6-58 (Edward Lewis 32) stumps, day one at Snape Park. Toss: Eastern Suburbs. Batted first: Eastern Suburbs.