Almanac Cricket – Sheffield Shield season cancelled: NSW awarded the title


The health crisis has forced Cricket Australia to cancel the remainder of the Sheffield Shield season. Only one round of matches and the Final are impacted by the decision. New South Wales, clear leaders on the points table, has been awarded the trophy for the 2019/20 season.


It’s pretty hard to argue with either call. Players’ welfare is the top priority. And unless you’re from Victoria or Queensland, the teams most likely to qualify to meet NSW in the Final, a double digit points lead with one round to play makes a team worthy of taking the Shield.


And with that, Cricket Australia has announced its Shield Team of the Season. Click here to see the team.


What are your thoughts on how it has all panned out? How did you see the season? Did the ‘selectors’ get their top side correct?


Feel free to respond in the Comments section below.




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  1. I can’t really quibble with either decision. As a Queenslander, if my team was 10 or so points clear at the top with one round to go, I’d be pretty peeved if we weren’t awarded the Shield in the current situation. As for the Team of the Year, the selection of Gannon is ‘interesting’. I thought that Jackson Bird did pretty well and would have got my nod. One thing is for sure, the games weren’t called off because of fears for crowds of 100 or more!

  2. Vic’s were coming home with a wet sail and would have destroyed NSW in the final. But hell, seeing that shield cricket doesn’t rouse ticker tape parades, and has been rendered to a feeder comp nowadays, who wins the comp is much ado about nothing.

  3. Pete, your last comment is discouraging but all too true. I suppose we might say that the end to the season is a fitting climax to the worst arranged season ever!

  4. The Shield has had a fair few fluctuations over the years. Its first few seasons only three States, Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland partook. We won the first Shield.

    There have been other interruptions to the competition. After the 1939-40 reason the cricket did not resume until 1946-47.

    However the cancellation of the final is a first. It’s only going to be one of many sporting firsts in this challenging time.

    The future is unwritten.


  5. Liam Hauser says

    It was actually NSW, Victoria and South Australia as the only 3 states from 1892-93 until 1925-26, then Queensland came on board in 1926-27. Victoria won the first and third years, and South Australia won the second year (1893-94). Western Australia won in its first year (1947-48). Tasmania came on board in 1977-78, and first won in 2006-07.
    Like Ian, I’d be peeved if Queensland led the competition by a clear-cut margin and wasn’t awarded the Shield under the current circumstances. I actually thought the last round and the final could have been played, considering there would have been considerably less than 500 people at the matches. But I can’t argue with the decision, given the worldwide issues at present.
    Let’s not forget that it wasn’t until 1982-83 that the Shield final was introduced. Until then, the ladder leader was the Shield champion at season’s end.
    I laughed at a tweet from a cricket writer, who tweeted: “Just as I thought. Coronavirus is all a plot to make sure faltering NSW get the Shield anyway”
    NSW has won the competition 47 times, followed by Victoria with 32. These figures are misleading considering NSW won it 17 times and Victoria 10 times in the first 30 years (excluding World War I, which took 4 years out of the competition) when there were only 3 states competing.
    It was widely publicised that Queensland’s first success (1994-95) was after 68 years. However, it was actually at the 63rd attempt (when you exclude the interruption for World War II). It was still a monumental drought, nevertheless. Currently, Western Australia hasn’t won it in 21 years, and South Australia hasn’t won it in 24 years. I wonder how long these droughts will continue.

  6. Liam, what are your thoughts on the ‘Team of the Season’? Who was lucky to be selected? Who was unfortunate to miss out?

  7. Whoops sorry Liam, i was clearly having a serious, seniors moment when i posted. It was indeed South Australia, not Queensland.

    My apologies for that error.


  8. Liam Hauser says

    Ian, I don’t have any objections with the Shield team of the year. Gannon earned his spot, having been the competition’s leading wicket-taker. I think Daniel Solway, Moises Henriques and Jackson Bird were perhaps a shade unlucky to be omitted, but there simply isn’t enough room for them. I can’t single out anyone in the XI who I would definitely omit.

  9. Brian The Ruminator says

    Above all else, it’s important to recognise the importance of the Shield in our national life. When people think nowadays of national competitions they’ll quote AFL, NRL, A-League, NBL etc. But in the scheme of things they are generally recent manifestations of an amalgamation of state based leagues.

    The Shield started out between three of the colonies and grew into our first truly national sporting carnival long before the interlopers.

    So yeah maybe I’m a cock-eyed optimist or an unreconstructed romantic but my rumination on the Shield is primarily one of gratitude that our original celebration of nationwide fraternity got most of the way through the season. I’m sure it will be back next season when a few of us tragics head down to Junction Oval and dream a bigger dream.

  10. Luke Reynolds says

    Only change I’d make to the team of the year is including Moises Henriques at number 6 instead of Tom Cooper, his figures inflated by one massive innings. Henriques has had a wonderful season and should be right in the reckoning for the tour of Bangladesh in July (if it goes ahead).

    Punx Pete is right, the Vics would have smashed NSW in the final. Like England in the World Cup, an asterix belongs next to the 2019/20 title!

  11. Even as a Victorian, I could not possibly argue about the Shield being awarded to the old enemy.

    A couple of interesting things to note about the team of the year:
    – Cameron Green, for me, is the story of the season. Hopefully he can get his back right and push to be the true all-rounder that Australia desires;
    – There is no spinner in the team of the year. That speaks volumes for the dearth in our spinning stocks, unfortunately;
    – Could there have been a greater contrast than Maddinson’s BBL form and his form in the Shield?
    – What happened to Chris Tremain this season (well below his usual standard!).
    – Well played Wes Agar (a friend of my son).

  12. Brian The Ruminator says

    Smokie makes some good points about spinners and the form of Cameron Green.

    It says something about how disconnected the Shield has become from Test selection when we look at the anomalies in recent years. We haven’t had too many players promoted solely due to Shield form.

    Even the great story of Labuschagne isn’t one of dominant Shield performances leading to inevitable baggy green. He was selected as much for what the coaching staff and CA brains trust saw in him as for his stats.

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