We take a look at how each First Grade Men's club is shaping up ahead of the 2019-20 Alcohol. Think Again Premier Cricket season.
Last Season: 12th
Coach: Ben Williams
Most Runs: Mitchell Todd (495 Runs at 35.36)
Most Wickets: Liam O’Connor (19 Wickets at 13.58)
Player to Watch: Henry Brookes (UK)
It has been six seasons now since Bayswater-Morley have played finals in the WA Premier Cricket Competition, but new coach Ben Williams is optimistic that 2019-20 will be the year that the Bears return to the Top 6. It appears that Wanneroo wicket-keeper batsman Christian Smith has been recruited to bolster the batting stocks for the Bears, while the acquisition of Warwickshire’s Henry Brookes, who has been recorded bowling in excess of 90mph will strike fear into many a batsman across the competition. Long-serving Bears players Liam O’Connor and the Todd brothers will inevitably need to shoulder the load for the team though if they are going to climb the ladder in 2019-20.
Last Season: Semi Finalists
Coach: Brad Thompson
Most Runs: Fraser Hay (590 Runs at 39.33)
Most Wickets: Mark Turner (34 Wickets at 17.09)
Player to Watch: Tom Smith
After consecutive seasons as semi-finalists, Melville will be looking to go deeper into the season in 2019-20 with long-serving Coach Brad Thompson again at the helm. Both Fraser Hay and Ryan Duffield have moved onto Gosnells, but the Storm will be confident that the young brigade will step up to fill the void. Tom Smith looks to be the one that the Storm will rely on particularly for a breakout season, after scoring 394 runs at a tick under 33 in his first season in First Grade. Mark Turner will again be crucial to the bowling attack; he has taken more than 20 wickets in five of the last six seasons for the Storm and they will expect that same high standard from him again this season.
Last Season: 13th
Coach: David Virgo
Most Runs: James Newnham (489 Runs at 28.76)
Most Wickets: Justin Kandiah (23 Wickets at 20.22)
Player to Watch: Clint Hinchliffe
Runs, runs and more runs will be the aim for Mount Lawley in season 2019-20 as the Club has recruited to help out James Newnham at the top of the order. Ex Western Australia player Clint Hinchliffe and one of the all-time leading Premier Cricket run scorers Stewart Walters have joined Mount Lawley to attempt to assist the line-up score more consistently during the season. Wicket keeper Andy Bottega, who made the Premier Cricket Team of the Year in 2019-20, will be looking to continue his good form, while the Club will be hoping enigmatic all-rounder Liam Purdy can stay on the park for the majority of the season. If that can happen, a fast shift up the ladder is possible for the Hawks.
Last Season: Elimination Finalists
Coach: Aaron Harwood
Most Runs: Cameron Bancroft (453 Runs at 50.33)
Most Wickets: Matthew Hanna (31 Wickets at 15.06)
Player to Watch: Aaron Hardie
Willetton remain one of the ultra-competitive teams in Premier Cricket, having made finals in eight of the past 10 seasons. However, the Club is still searching for that elusive first premiership since the move to Burrendah Reserve many years ago. The squad is again very strong in 2019-20, but only when all players are not on representative duty. Cam Bancroft, Darcy Short, Aaron Hardie, Matt Hanna and Simon Mackin are all proven performers for the Dragons, but the amount of cricket this group will play may dictate just how deep into the season they will go. Either way, opposition Clubs will fear the Dragons when their turn comes to play them in the 2019-20 WA Premier Cricket Season.