Last season's match up against Sydney Uni in 2nd grade was a spiteful affair. One which witnessed a narrow loss by Wests and a torrent of hubris from the premiers.
"What will you losers be doing in April?"
"These blokes can't even speak English" a Uni player said.
Much more than 6 points was at stake this time round.
Winning the toss and bowling first, James Shepherd provided some much needed venom to the Wests attack bowling with aggression and purpose. He beat the bat repeatedly and had the Larkin boys wishing they had persisted with winter polo with mother. He was ably supported by the veteran of second grade, Emmanuel Parmekelis. Whilst only a couple of wickets fell in the first session, Uni limped passed 50 runs by lunch. A tough middle session saw Uni build a couple of partnerships but Wests walked tall and remained in the game with wickets falling at key intervals, Uni going into tea 4/200. On a flat track post tea Uni decided to declare at 9/290. Para burgled 3 poles, the remainder shared.
Wests finished the day at 0/44 off 10 overs.
Week 2 witnessed an astonishingly assertive performance by the top order. At 4/270 the game was locked up. Shenal Siriwardena scored his maiden grade ton, after 27 seasons. David "the prince of pratten" Patterson scored a commanding 75. Both were ably supported.
Ever the entertainers, Wests kept the crowd interested, passing Uni's meagre total 9 down.
To put the win in context, Uni have taken out the premiership the previous consecutive 4 years.