Proprietary v South Port
The Panthers and the Pirates get the honour of playing the first match at the resurfaced Memorial Oval on Saturday.
The Panthers will be looking to go one better than last year and start the season as warm premiership favourites. The Panther’s bowling stocks have been boosted by Hamish Wright who is a tall fast medium bowler. Important players for the Panthers this year will be Reece Fowler, Fraser Wyatt, Peter Bessen, Westley Wyatt and Tate Bradley.
The Pirates have been on a bit of a recruiting drive in the off season and have gained the signatures of James Congdon, Michael Watts and classy left-arm orthodox bowler Michael Ashman. Hopefully the Pirate youngsters in Jake Walsh and Flynn Bullen continue to develop. Rob Anderson looms as their key weapon with both bat and ball.
I think the Panthers will start the season with a win.
Wandearah v Solomontown-North
Last year’s premiers Wandearah take on the Cats at Memorial Oval on Sunday.
The Rams have changed captains in the off season with Grewar medallist Matt Thornton taking over the reins. Thornton will again be the key man with bat and ball for the Rams. Todd Baker, Darcy Puddy, Stevie Athanasos and Andrew Congdon will be the other key players with bat and ball.
After much discussion around the Cats and whether they would nominate an A grade side they have decided to do what is best for Pirie cricket and remain in the A grade competition for 2018/19. Ben Brown will again captain the side and is their main man with bat and ball. Olly Cosmai, Mick Tresize, Scott McIntyre and the returning James Pavlich will be the ones to watch for the Cats.
The Rams will go in as favourites but the Cats have a couple of players that can take a match away for any team in the comp on their day.
Warnertown v South Port
The Wombats meet the Pirates at Globe Oval to get their seasons underway. The Wombats finished a disappointing fourth last season and will look to improve this season. The Pirates have added depth to their squad so should be better this season in the B grade. The Wombats to win in what will hopefully be a good contest.
Proprietary v Port Germein
Last year’s wooden spoon winners the Panthers take on three time defending champions the Sharks at Complex 1 on Saturday morning. The Panthers will be hoping that their A grade is at full strength so that some players can drop down to strengthen the B grade. The Sharks again look powerful and should start the season with an easy victory.
Wandearah v Risdon
This is the match of the round in the B grade competition this week as the Rams clash with last year’s beaten finalist the Tigers. The Tigers have an even side that can all produce on their day. The Rams will be led by Dwain Sedunary this season and should have a young team eager to improve. The Tigers will win what should be a tight contest.