by Raj Singh
Pembroke Old Scholars Cricket Club is a small club based in Norwood South Australia in the Adelaide Turf Competition. It is your typical Old Scholars club run by 1 or 2 volunteers with 2 two day sides and a one day side. Their last premiership was won in 1992.
When I joined in 2000 the club was in A3. We lost 2 premierships in 2 years but still progressed to A1. We lost one is A3 where we had a bad day but the A2 was one that we lost due to factors beyond our control. Every other game in Adelaide was called off due to rain but we batted on in hail and mist with batsmen unable to grip their bats. The Opposition batted in sunshine the day before. We lost by a mere 6 runs. I won’t talk about it any more. Despite it being 10 years ago it is still too raw. The good thing is that the Club has gone up to the top Grade of Adelaide Turf and stayed in A1 since that day .This is a great achievement as we do not pay players like a lot of other teams in the competition. The club runs on the good bloke test of Boof Lehmann. My 2 day playing days are over with 3 young kids and I have resigned myself to the fact that I won’t play in a premiership side. I now just play the odd one day game when home life allows it and still love every minute of it.
What I do have is lifelong friends and memories of great times and great blokes that will be talked about forever. I can count the weddings of 7 players I have been to over the journey with another current player having his this year after playing his first game at the age of 17 at the club and having a stubby poured on his head by the President. These are things to cherish. Days at the pub on washouts, beers after the game, fines, end of season trips these are the reasons why we play the game.
It is getting harder and harder to fill sides, with family life and young blokes finding better things to do than stand in the field for 6 hours. Rulebook Ashwood who joined our club 3 years ago may well have saved it. His dedication and commitment to filling sides is second to none and he now has fathers and sons playing in the same side. I played in the one day side last week where a father and son opened the batting and the father took 3 wickets after having not bowled for 23 years. All clubs need someone like that to survive.
The Kings despite struggling to field a team for the best part of the year have progressed to a T 20 Grand Final to be played at Adelaide Oval on Sunday Feb 16 at 7pm. What an opportunity for guys to play on the hallowed Turf something I was never able to do. This presents a great chance for past players and supporters to share in an occasion this club has not experienced for a long time. We will go in as massive underdogs against a side with former state players Brad Young and Mark Harrity and district player Tom Plant but whatever the result it will be a privilege to see a mixture of ex-teammates and newcomers to this great club compete for silverware again.