Q1: Your father is a life member of Newtown and Chilwell Cricket Club, a club icon and general scallywag about the place, so you were part of the furniture early on: what is your first memory of the club?
A1: My earliest memory down at Queens Park was playing Milo Have A Go with my brother Tom. We would both have a lot of fun on a Friday night, running around making friends and developing
our cricket skills. I also remember running around the clubrooms before upstairs was renovated. A lot of Dad’s gold coins ended up in the pinball machine.
Q2: Your old man reckons whenever he comes to watch you bat, you get out. Have you got some advice for him?
A2: This is very true! I can always recognise Dad driving down in his white Territory. He would park himself behind the goals so he very easy to recognise. My advice to him would be park somewhere else or wait until I message him “I’m out”.
Q3: Run us through the premiership you won in Under 13’s.
A3: Growing up, I was very fortunate to play junior cricket under the team name Chisholm. Not only was I playing alongside my brother, but I was also coached by my Dad. We had a very good team with some amazing talent. I loved playing my junior cricket at Newtown and I felt very lucky that we managed to win a few premierships.
Q4: How many of those players are still at the club?
A4: Unfortunately, there is not a single player still playing from that team. Jamie Harrison is still playing very good cricket in Melbourne but apart from that the boys have moved on from their cricket.
Q5: You know what it’s like to win premierships, both as a junior and senior player with the Second Xl a few years back, how far away are you from adding a First Xl premiership to your CV?
A5: The 2018/19 season will be my sixth season playing First XI cricket. In that time unfortunately, I have only played in two finals matches and have lost both. I believe in the past two years our First XI team has grown unbelievably strong and now with the likes of Will Simson, Tim Hosking, Cooper Bingham and Nick McGuane, all players 22 years old or younger who have now a few First XI seasons under their belt, I think a First XI premiership shouldn’t be too far away. Adding a First XI premiership to the CV would be a dream come true!
Q6: How far away is that first century?
A6: This is something I have asked myself for a very long time. Yes, it would be a great accomplishment and something I will never take for granted. I need to work hard on my game and be patient at the crease, and hopefully the day will come.
Q7: You made your First Xl debut as a wicket keeper. How hard has the transition been to batting all-rounder at the top of the order?
A7: I did make my First XI debut as a wicket keeper and I also think I batted at number 10. I did have a lot of faith in my ability as I liked to open the batting all through Junior cricket. I like the challenge at the top of the order and I hope I can contribute this year with some big scores.
Q8: What sort of captain do you see yourself being?
A8: Becoming captain of Newtown is a huge honour for me. I’m the type of guy who likes to have a lot of fun on the field and someone who is very approachable. I want my team members to feel comfortable around me, and as this is my first year as captain, I would also like them to help me become more comfortable in the captaincy role.
Q9: Apart from your father, who has been the biggest influence on you as a cricketer?
A9: Greg Hansen was my school cricket coach for the best part of four years. At the age of 15 I started training with him at the College and in year 12 we ended up winning the Premiership for the school. This is one of my cricketing highlights, and something I’ll never forget.
Q10: Everyone has a Russell Mitchell story, what’s yours?
A10: I was lucky enough to play with Russell as my captain in the 2012/13 seconds premiership. Russell praised me for my batting innings with Dev Royce as we put on a handy partnership in the middle order. I always notice Russell watching from a distance as I bat in the nets at training and he would always let me know what I could be doing to make myself a better batsman for the team. He is someone I look up to at the club and always have a great time listening to his stories on a Saturday night after a game down at Queens Park.