Presentation Night at Belconnen Premier Inn, March 24 2018

We had won a premiership last weekend when our 6th-grade side won a 1 wicket thriller against ANU White at the Nest. I wish I was there to witness it even as a player, considering I had played half my games in 6s. Nevertheless, my contributions to the path of glory were already acknowledged by Archie when I had told him that I was going to be unavailable for finals, so I was therefore happy that I actually played my part.

Apparently, it was the club’s first trophy in 14 years, and there was no doubt the jubilation was felt when everyone sang the team song on that night itself. I suppose it’s all right timing with the presentation night coming around tonight. I was intending not to go with family being around, but I had changed my mind when I wondered if I won something, and I wasn’t around to get it. That something was probably going to be the Most improved considering that I had progressed from 6s to 4s by taking the opportunities that presented itself through the unavailabilities of other bowlers. I wasn’t thinking that I was going to win it as I felt that Austin D’Alessandro was going to be the frontrunner anyway. He had progressed from 5s to 2s in a single season with the bat, which wasn’t surprising to some people who thought he was a very decent bat. Dominic Tran would also be an outside chance, particularly after hitting his first six for the club before hitting the winning runs that took 6s to the premiership. If I eventually got it, Great! I was there to claim it. Otherwise, never mind it was a long shot, but I will be there at least to catch up with my mates before disappearing away from the field for at least 5 months.

I remember a piece of advice that I received in Perth from Mark Charman at the Riverton Rostrata Cricket Club. He told me that awards shouldn’t be the sole focus of playing cricket. It should be for fun and to enjoy ourselves with our mates. My motivations were partly that, but I’m anyways here to play cricket on turf and try to improve as much as I could before it gets too late. On that front, I felt I’ve gained some new skills since joining Ginninderra, and I think that I can still get better. If I get some recognition via awards, then great. Otherwise, never mind. I really do care about an environment that gives me opportunities, and so far, I felt I made the right choice because the club has been great to me.

Given the official presentation was to be at 7pm, I decided to rock up closer to the time since I was spending time with family by showing them around Canberra. Like I was able to correctly predict last year’s Charles Wood Medallist was to be Lukey Ryan, I will predict that this year’s medallist is our 1st-grade vice-captain Rhys Healy who finished as the 1s leading run-scorer,. Still, he might have some competition against the reigning champion who was the joint leading wicket-taker for 1s as well as making some useful lower-order runs. Last year I was seated with Archie and Andy Loveday, but this year, they were at their own table with most of the premiership-winning side. Despite the table list at the bar was different from the one near the door, I would be sitting in Table 8 with the likes of Kumar, Kris Oliver, and JP.

Although I eventually didn’t win anything, I still had an excellent relaxing time without any incident. Not quite, but there were minor incidents. First of all, I had a plate of garden salad, and when I left to grab a tall glass of soft drink, I had the whole bowl of salad on my side of the table. I had suspected someone like JP would have done this, but I didn’t care so much. Secondly, there was duck on the menu for tonight, and I was served that for dinner. Next to me, Kumar was served Lamb, so thankfully, he switched dishes over with me. I thought being served duck was a bad omen because I believe the next time I’ll bat, I score a duck or even worse get the duck trophy, which is something I do not want. Speaking of the duck trophy, I got a special mention by Darren Walker, the club’s assistant coach and MC for the night because I made a mention about our defending duck champion BT recently mainly because of our past duals in the nets and my desire to get him out which I did. Anyways, BT passed on his ‘crown’ to Fernsy, who actually knew that he was going to get it because he had a speech in mind.

On the night, they gave away trophies for every player who took a 5-for or scored a hundred during the season. I was feeling a little bitter since they didn’t have this award last season when I took my five-for against Wests, but it made me determined to take more hauls in the future so I can get one myself. Never mind that, but I could console myself with the fact that I correctly predicted the Charles Wood Medalist again, which did go to Rhys Healy, but he was a joint winner with Jak Wilcox. Both had excellent seasons with bat and ball, respectively, and Griffo pointed out that both were living proof of the junior-senior linkage within the club and how important it is to maintain the bond so that more juniors can be easily integrated into the senior league and perform. It’s probably why Griffo will be pushing for more senior participation in such things.

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