Stars in their eyes
On Thursday night, over 250 people turned up at Kings Park Upper Gully to see over 90 talented junior players being presented their FTGDCA representative cricket caps by cricket legend Glenn Maxwell and Victoria’s new star Sam Harper.
FTGDCA Executive Member Adrian Brown stated “both Glenn and Sam played their juniors in the association (Maxwell – South Belgrave & Harper – Eildon Park) and both represented FTGDCA in the representative teams as juniors. They are the 2nd and 3rd players from the FTGDCA to play for Victoria over the last 69 years and both play BBL for the Melbourne Stars. It was great to see them visit their cricketing roots and not only present the caps but interview each other and tell some interesting stories. The crowd was silent listening to every word intently. The night finished off with Glenn and Sam signing autographs and welcoming new sponsors Nick Wakeling MP and Jeff from JZ Motors”.
Cricket in the Ferntree Gully District Cricket Association has never been more popular with over 3200 registered players taking part in the sport this summer. It all started 25th August 1947, when a group of cricket followers from Ferntree Gully and its surrounding districts, led by Cr. Frank Pickett (Pickett Reserve), held a meeting in the Ferntree Gully Shire Hall for the purpose of forming an Association within the Ferntree Gully Shire. The association now covers four shires and has over 25 clubs, 100 junior teams, 90 senior teams and 30 veteran’s teams.
“I have no doubt that the success can be attributed to growth in junior teams and the focus on junior pathways. We encourage and teach young people in the local community to participate in Cricket in order to promote fitness and an active lifestyle. We invest over $20,000 per year in ensuring that the best junior and senior cricketers have a mapped pathway to the best opportunity of playing cricket at the highest level” Adrian stated.
Over the past couple of months, the FTGDCA has commenced its junior pathways for its high level players through identifying the best junior crickets in the association and inviting them to try out for the Victorian Metropolitan Cricket Union competition commencing 9th January 2017. Along the way the U14 team won section 8 of the Victorian Country Cricket League tournament lead by coach Mick Beyer.
The association has also been able to attract qualified and experienced high level coaches and knowing that Premier and Sub District scouts will be watching, this is a great cricket pathway.
Adrian added, “We were in a difficult but great position to pick the teams as we identified and personally invited over 120 talented players to try out. The VMCU is made up of around 16 different associations battling it out for bragging rights as the best association in Melbourne and surrounding country areas. These teams represent over 25,000 junior cricketers. We are setting ourselves up to be competitive in all age groups if not win the carnival’.
We wish the FTGDCA well for the carnival and a special thank you to Sam and Glenn from the Melbourne Stars, two very impressive young men. Good luck in Hobart on Boxing Day.
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