Historic weekend for Ipswich cricket
TOMORROW is a milestone for the Ipswich cricket.
It will be 125th anniversary of the first ever meeting of the Ipswich and West Moreton Cricket Association held Isaac Ham's Hall, in Nicholas Street.
This meeting was the brainchild of four gentlemen.
They were The Queensland Times journalist and compositor Tom J. Barker better known as "Red Gum" or "Old Sport", Whitwood mine owner William Stafford, umpire/official W.J. Lynch and veteran cricket Jack Miller.
All loved their cricket but all felt aggrieved by the inability of Brisbane clubs to adhere to their fixtures in Ipswich year after year, especially after the Christmas break.
In those times, most matches were timeless, which meant they were played to a finish.
Back in the 1880s, due to small populations in Brisbane and Ipswich, teams didn't have many good cricketers. However, by the time of 1893, with a huge increase of British immigrants into Queensland, especially Ipswich's mines, the two towns were expanding quickly and had better players.
As well, there was no real ruling association in Brisbane or Ipswich, though the QCA did exist as head body for selection the colony's team and solely looked after that team.
Some local Brisbane competitions did exist but there was no overarching body that made teams keep to their schedules.
Cricket fixtures that were drawn up were bilateral agreements between clubs. These were usually played in "byes", public holiday or scratch matches awaiting their next schedule opponent.
Teams didn't play for competition points, more for the social aspects while crowds would flock to see some of the best cricketers in the colony hit the ball, like today's T20s.
With Ipswich considered a long way away in those days, the Brisbane club cricketers would have to rent out a horse and dray or horse drawn buses for a day to get here.
Either way, this would mean an all day trip to North Ipswich Cricket Reserve.
The 1893 meeting was beginning of the IWMCA, which means IWMCA is older than the Brisbane Premier Grade (1899).
On the Ipswich Cricket History Facebook page, there is a photo file of the QT article if people would like to read it.
The challenges the first president of the Association, Alderman Alfred J Stephenson faced, were many including the tricky decision to make the country's teams fixtures one day that started at 10am and finished at 6pm.
Today's president Mike Stoodley and senior coordinator Eleesa Lewis still have that same conundrum when mapping a fixture list.
With the advent of T20s, and the need to play a lot of one-day fixtures due to all rep cricket being one day and T20 matches, it doesn't leave much room for traditional two-day cricket to be played locally any more in the top grade.
With the Madsen Harding Shield matches between Ipswich and Toowoomba clubs now established, it is difficult to design a fixture list unless there is more Sunday cricket, which most players and their partners are adverse to.
IPSWICH Logan Hornets campaign got off to a winning start against South Brisbane, thanks to great fightback with ball late in Souths' innings.
Souths were cruising at 3/210 off 38 overs, but inspired by four wickets from Harry Wood, Souths crashed to be all out for 265 only 10 overs later.
Composed batting from Wood (79) and Levi Thomson-Matthews (68) in the runchase ensured victory.
Today is their first home fixture against Wynnum Manly who have former Test bowler Peter George and former Brisbane Heat allrounders Alistair McDermott and Jason Floros. It will be a good challenge for the Hornets and where they are at.
Young Dylan McAteer weaved a web to take a remarkable 6/21 on senior grade debut for the Hornets in Second Grade but it wasn't enough as batting faulted chasing Souths total of 182.
The Hornets Seconds have a must win game down at Tingalpa today.
The women's first grade campaign begins tomorrow, which will feature the debut of the Hornets in the top grade.
The competition is named after Katherine Raymont who was the first Queenslander to play one day cricket for women's national team back in 1990.
She hails from Gatton and played for Queensland between 1980-97 as the state's wicketkeeper.
The women will play 15 one day matches and 10 T20 games with a semi and grand finals for both format spread over six months.
The Jodie Field Shield, the Reserve Grade competition, begins on September 30.
The Lord Taverners also begins tomorrow sun with Hornets hosting Redlands.
There are 14 teams with the 12 Premier Grade teams each supplying a team while the Darling Downs and Wide Bay have been invited into the comp as well.
It is a good move so regional areas gain experience against high quality cricketers.
Great time to sign on juniors
JUNIOR sign-ons are still going on so it is not too late to get the kids down to the local club to get them involved or started in this great game.
Woolworth Blast has replaced the Milo in2Cricket programs as new way for boys and girls, to increase their skills through fun game based activities.
If you would like to try the "Come and Try" cricket as a precursor to Woolworths Blast, Centrals and Thunder Cricket Clubs are hosting these programs.
Limestone Park session will start on Friday at 5pm where Brisbane Heat fast bowler Georgia Prestwidge will help launch the Woolworths Blast program in Ipswich. There will also be a fast bowling competition.
Meanwhile over at Tivoli Sports Complex, the program will run between 4-5.30pm.
The Woolworths Junior Blast is aimed at kids aged 5-7.
The games are based around small groups to ensure every child gets a go which allow new skills.
All Ipswich based clubs have junior blast. See details at playcricket.com.au
Master Blasters is aimed at kids aged 7-10, who understand the basics of cricket and they will play shortened modified games of about 90 minutes.
However, these are based on levels of ability and experience of the child has so parents shouldn't feel constrained by the age groups too much.
It is just a guide.
These programs will take place at Limestone Park and Woodcrest College.
Springfield's program starts on Tuesday, between 6.30-7.30pm.
The Ipswich program begins on Friday, October 14, starting at 6pm.
For junior cricketers aged over 10, many clubs are having their sign-ons and/or begin training this week.
The junior cricket season starts soon.
It is split into "levels", which will be based on the skill of the child as whole.
Each level will have different player numbers, a different pitch length and duration than the traditional cricket game. It's played on a Friday night or Saturday morning.
Northsiders have a sign-on and training day at Norths Leagues Club, at Pelican St next Friday night.
Laidley juniors can sign on at a 4pm session on Wednesday at Bichel Oval. They will mainly train on Wednesday.
Brothers train at nets at Brothers League Club at Wiley Street on Wednesdays for Level 1 (5pm) and Level 2 (6pm).
Level 3 is held on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons at 5pm.
Centrals train every Wednesday too at Limestone Park at their main nets, but their Level 4 team trains on Tuesday and Thursday nights at 5pm.
Fassifern train every Wednesday at 4.30pm at Coronation Park in Boonah.
Thunder's junior sign-on is Thursday between 4pm and 5.30pm at Tivoli Sports Complex.
Redback's level juniors start training next Wednesday at Sams Reserve, Redbank Plains.
So get the kids out of the house and down to the local club to meet some new mates and summer of fun in the sun.