Fathers' Day saw some mad dogs and Forster men come out,not in mid day sun, in fact in non-spring and wintery conditions, to have a hit and get cracking for the Great Lakes Senior Cricket Club and the forthcoming season.
Whilst the numbers weren't huge, given the conditions and the celebratory family day events, it was a beaut session with some very good young players working out, having heaps of fun and catching up with some off season banter.
Club president and seconds skipper from last year, Sam Bowkett took over collection duties for the day from tireless worker and admin co-ordinator, Cathy McPherson, and even managed to gather some dollars, no mean feat given players' often tardy response in all clubs to getting their fees sorted.
Whilst the club has not gone ahead with a planned move to Premier League, the omens are very positive for a beaut season and a launch into the big league next year.
Captain Sam was thrilled to see some key players at the session on Sunday.
"We have a number of young players who did well in thirds last year and returning guys from seconds who will all be in the mix,” he confidently stated.
“I'm excited at how some of our young blokes will develop and we will have two solid squads."
With a few players already members of Manning and or Mid North Coast rep squads for various carnivals or the rep season proper, the club is looking forward to building a strong future.
Given the excellent work of local Great Lakes junior organisers, who themselves have a huge launch coming up on Saturday, September 15 at Lake St Fields, the season is quickly taking shape as one to be a part of.
It is expected that a number of the more confident young players will double up and have a crack at grade this year, some even dragging along their fathers out of retirement.
Graham Robinson along with another local tragic, Trevor McBride is organising the forthcoming junior open day.
"Our juniors are going from strength to strength," Graham commented.
"We are thrilled to have a number of our players enjoying rep programs but our bread and butter is getting kids along to try the new, fast paced games that anyone of any ability can play.
“And with women's cricket being the other fastest growing sphere in our national game, we hope to see more girls jump in to have fun," he added.
A number of primary schools around the area will also be attending a gala day being run at Tuncurry Oval on September 12.
Modified games for boys and girls will be played in a fun based day to promote the new six and eight player formats and add to physical activity and skill development programs so important to all of us in today’s society.
Kids who develop their skills a bit further can then enter rep programs with local juniors or via the schools' PSSA programs, with representation in Hunter Schools' regional teams also a carrot for those wanting to aim for higher honours.
With local high school contact, Michael Adams also recruiting, and fellow educator, Paul Rosenbaum, another on the job, Great Lakes is looking for any players who want to be part of the surge towards a successful season in the senior ranks.
"Players, or those who want to find out more can come to training on Thursday and do their registration or just ask questions," club stalwart McPherson said.
More information can also be accessed on the website, http://www.greatlakescc.nsw.cricket.com.au/common/pages/public/entitydetails.aspx.
In addition, newly arrived vets tragic, Barry Everingham is encouraging all those who thought they may be over the hill to come and have a go too, as all are welcome and it's a long season.
"With so many busy parts to our lives these days, there's often the need for back-up players who can play now and then," he said.
"And those who have been a part of the successful last man standing comps being run may find they will enjoy going back to the longer form of the game.
“They may even get more players to join them in winter.
"The vets movement is progressing a lot faster than most of us move in the field and it's great fun.
“A lot of late 40s or over 50s guys are still in the area and just need to make contact to become part of it.
“It's all positive with a bit of a net now and then, some games against similar aged guys and there will be a number of games offered during the season."
At this stage, Great Lakes seniors training will be continuing from 4pm at the Tuncurry nets for anyone interested, but alterations may happen due to other commitments over time.
Anyone wishing to attend is welcome to come along or contact the club via the Facebook page.
The season promises much, it's now down to practice and performance!
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