Courtesy of the Geelong Advertiser
Over recent seasons Ben Neville has been the foundation behind the Blues’ runscoring ability and the curly-haired batting star has been incredibly consistent, hitting nearly 1000 runs over the past three summers.
Perhaps last Saturday at Winter Reserve he reached his peak making a superb 113 against one of the finest attacks in GCA1, East Belmont.
It helped Newtown & Chilwell compile a very competitive 262.
“We have a young side so the responsibility and pressure on me to score runs is just the way it is,” Neville said.
“(But) I enjoy the challenge. I have to concentrate on accumulating runs over long periods at the crease.
Batting with inexperienced batting partners requires patience.”
Apart from a stint with Premier Club, North Melbourne, Neville has played his cricket at Queens Park since juniors.
Possibly one of the few captain-coaches to ever be in charge of preparing the post-match toasted sandwiches, he is pleased that the threat of relegation for the GCA’s most successful club has eased.
“I think we are fourth in the club championship at the moment,” Neville said.
“So the club is heading in the right direction. We started to put the right people in the right places including some excellent specialist coaches.
“No one person can do everything.”
A scalp like third-placed East Belmont would be another step in rebuilding Newtown & Chilwell’s standing.
“Last Saturday, we did not quite bat the 85 overs as we had set out to do,” Neville said.
“And they are a strong batting side so they are capable of making 262.
“A young talented side like ours can surprise people, though. What we can do is achieve some consistency in the field and bowl one side of the wicket. If we can give it a good go all day the result will be close.”
Neville, who has worked in alternative therapies, currently earns his living walking dogs for their owners in Melbourne’s wealthiest suburbs.
“I’ve got a good lifestyle at the moment. I’m enjoying my cricket and this is the best job I have ever had,” he said