The toiling, the worrying, the anticipation was finally over at 1:00 PM on Saturday 7th October as Terence (Hoops) Hooper and Brett (Speed) Weightman strode out to the wicket at Gill Park to face the Western Suburbs bowling attack.
Nervous energy was evident in the Wanderers players with 12-year A-Grade veteran Craig Hallett admitting having butterflies in the stomach at this momentous occasion. Just prior to the 1:00 PM start, each A Grade player was presented with the Wanderers' new look baggy cap by Club President Terry Hooper, photos were taken (see below), the toss done & won and we were away.
We were off and running, the ground looked a treat with umbrellas and the Australian flag fluttering on the mounds. Many former members had come along to watch and enjoy the atmosphere and as the time ticked away they were in for a treat as Hooper & Weightman grew in confidence with every passing moment. At the first drinks break we were in a very comfortable position of 0 - 89 with both players looking very comfortable on the new wicket which was playing very true. Brett Weightman was the first to reach a milestone bringing up his half century, but unfortunately was out very soon after without increasing his score with the total on 94. Brett looked to be back in touch especially with the confidence he showed in his front foot driving.
Lyndom (Lumpy) Camm who has been in good form himself joined Hooper and soon Hoops' half century was registered. Camm continued where Weightman left off and struck the ball well to all points of the ground but again, just as he was looking really dangerous was out for 31 with the score on 158. Wests began to get some confidence, our boys began to worry and all of a sudden we were in deep trouble with three wickets falling with the total on 162 including Hooper for 78. A middle order collapse and we were in dire trouble with the tail end having to keep things tight in attempt to regain supremacy. However with 15 minutes till stumps we were all out for 232 off 75 overs, a disappointing total considering the excellent start that the top order had given us. Wests faced one over and were 0 - 1 at stumps.
The party then began as our other teams came back to their clubhouse after their games along with the junior players & parents. A great night was occurring with most players / members / supporters setting in for a traditional Wanderers' "do". The only dark spot was the early departure of our Under 16 players who would also make history the following morning playing the first junior match at Wanderers Home Ground. As all good and memorable Wanderers' "do's" go, stumps were about 4 AM for the diehard.
UNDER 16 - SUNDAY MORNING
8:30 AM saw the commencement of the Under 16 match against Sub Parks and we were not fortunate this time to win the toss, so we were in the field. The wicket once again was true and the Sub's batsmen took toll of any loose deliveries and sloppy fielding by our boys who you could tell, were very rusty in the first match of the season. Subs were in a strong position until the introduction of 13-year-old off-spinner Jason Walsh making his debut in Under 16 Gold competition. Walsh used the strong north easterly breeze well, kept the ball well flighted and after his allotted 6 overs had 4/23. Newly capped skipper Sean Bell who also plays 2nd XI helped mop up the subs innings snaring 3/20 off 12 overs. At stumps, Subs were all out for 234. An almost identical score from yesterday's 1st XI match.
Wanderers' A Grade - 7th Oct, 2000
Back row: (L->R) Terry Hooper (President), Sean Moroney, Brett Weightman Lyndom Camm, Kris Halliday, Scott Connor, Steven Tighe (scorer), Graham Humphries (Manager)
Front Row: John Monk, Craig Hallett, Terence Hooper (c), Adam Mikic, Craig Gatherum, Matthew Gilmore.