T20 competition returns to club cricket

UPDATE: Due to weather and ground conditions, the match between Grafton and Cornwall is now at Cornwall Park #1

The opening round of the T20 competition is upon us, with the first games starting tomorrow afternoon.

Cornwall and Grafton are facing off at Victoria Park, and there’s a little extra spice coming in for the game – Auckland Cricket’s partnership with Movember New Zealand is culminating in this first round (albeit a few days late).

Both Grafton captain Michael Snedden, and Cornwall co-captain Sam Anderson, say that it’s a great time of year to be playing club cricket.

“You don’t have to wait two weeks to have a bat or a bowl,” says Anderson, “You’ve got T20 midweek and limited overs on Saturday.”

“Sometimes the challenge can be trying not to go too hard from the first ball.”

Snedden agrees that the adjustment from two-day cricket to T20 won’t be a huge test of skill.

“The biggest difference will be in the deck, and it’s exciting to see what the pitch will be like,” he says.

“It’s great to have so much cricket going on in the run-up to Christmas.”

Snedden says that there were some good mo’s in the Grafton team during the month of Movember.

“Sachin Variath grew a pretty impressive one over about four and a half weeks.”

“A few of the guys have kept theirs, and I think most donated as well.”

On the Cornwall side, those who did get their ‘stache on have mostly reached for their razor.

“Fanie de Villiers had a great one,” says Anderson.

“Though I think I’m the only one who still has a mo, so I might be able to claim that mine is the best in the team as of right now.”

The T20 competition sees the introduction of Kumeu and Hibiscus Coast into the Premier Men’s grade, for two pools of eight teams. All of the games tomorrow evening will be starting at 5:30pm.

Men’s T20 Championship Round One

Pool One:

East Coast Bays vs North Shore – Windsor Park
Takapuna vs Hibiscus Coast – Onewa Domain
Suburbs New Lynn vs Kumeu – Ken Maunder Park
Birkenhead vs Waitakere – Birkenhead War Memorial Park

Pool Two:

Grafton vs Cornwall – Cornwall Park
Eden Roskill vs Parnell – Keith Hay Park
Papatoetoe vs Auckland University – Papatoetoe Rec
Howick Pakuranga vs Ellerslie – Lloyd Elsmore Park