The Australian Cricket Almanac 1994: Doin’ The Eagle Blue

Instead of the magazine rack on top of the old nursery robe in the study, this time I’ve had a look on my bookshelves. There I found five copies of the Australian Cricket Almanac, 1990 thru 1996 and I plucked out the 1994 edition (1995 is missing).

Fortunately for readers of my ‘old Footy Budget’ meanderings, I didn’t  scan in all 530 pages. The breadth and depth of its coverage was Wisden-like, but what appealed to me were the team photos below, from Test to schoolboy teams.

94 photo 1

The 93/94 season saw South Africa undertake its first full tour of Australia since 1963/64. The rain marred Boxing Day Test failed to deliver a result, the locals couldn’t chase down 117 runs at Sydney, but squared the series three weeks later in Adelaide.

The 50 over Tri-series (with the Kiwis rounding out the roster) was played before the First Test, then between the Second and Third Tests. Try telling the kids of today that and they won’t believe you.

Yep, Simmo was still coach back then, Hansie Cronje was eyeing off a journalist’s new leather jacket while Warne and Cullinan look to be getting along famously.

NSW

This shot of the all-conquering NSW squad is notable as much for those in the ‘absent’ column than the fellas in the photo. Two blokes here went on to grasp the #1 El Supremo spot in major cricketing nations, Trevor Bayliss (England) and Brad McNamara (Australia).

SA

My home state. Shane George was Tony Antrobus in creams, Bomber Hammond was the unsung hero of the 1973 West Indies tour, but no one else went on to do much after this. Unless you call two Australian coaches, one head of the world wide player’s association and a clown in a green mankini who indirectly led one of Australia’s best Rugby League players to face cocaine charges not much.

WA

Remember those stupid parachute material tracksuits? They were popular west of Kalgoorlie; fortunately for us this photo is greyscale, lest we were assaulted with a melange of lime, verbena, teal and maybe some black and gold.

S McGill was probably down at Margaret River on team photo day.

Banks Cant

Don’t be fooled by this squad photo. Only Dean Waugh togged up for the premiers in the finals, but at least the club stalwarts are immortalised here. The notion that cricket scorers can’t dress fashionably is also hit for a maximum, to invoke the modern parlance.

Newc

Country cricket personified. As is the danger to waistlines from imbibing too much of the sponsor’s product.

Isn’t it reassuring to see that Rick McCosker circa 1994 looks exactly as you would expect Rick McCosker circa 1994 to have looked? Exactly.

Devenport

Germany was unified by the early 90s, not so Tasmania. D Mullett’s hairstyle was an opportunity lost.

Nth Hobart

What a magnificent backdrop to this photo. North Hobart’s third flag in succession was underpinned by bowler Errol Barrow, who represented Canada in that year’s second division World Cup mid-season.

Fitz

Despite my SA roots, I can see how any club team that includes Barrel Scholes and Gary and Leigh Watts would be hard nuts.

Toombul

I have no idea who any of these coves are. Which makes their inclusion even more special; any clues from the Sunshine State readers?

salis

I’ve referred to my extremely tangential involvement with Salisbury DCC  here. They went from outhouse to powerhouse during the late 70s and just kept going. Sales of West End Eagle Blue went through the roof north of Gepps Cross after this endorsement. When were the t-shirts printed? Glenn Bishop’s hair has been synthesised by NASA for use as the outer layer on the space shuttle since 1985.

WT

West Torrens knocked Salisbury over in the West End (of course) one-day comp. James Pyke was still wielding the willow (I’d forgotten that he had also been drafted to Collingwood. Bullet dodged). I’m hoping for big things from his kid brother this winter.

mid guilf

The WA district premiers had five blokes who would earn Test caps over their career. Is that a record?

Qld Country

Are any of these chaps from the Darling Downs? #Queenslander? Did the Bundy Bear make an appearance at stumps? Are these the best cricket jumpers ever? This outfit even beat the Qld state side by 7 wickets in a one day fixture that year, but were beaten favourites against the ACT in the national champs.

WA Country

More crap WA trakkies, again, once more, still, too, as well.

Igs

Despite shaving not yet being part of their daily routine, these kids were the winners of the Gillette Cup, the Australian School Championship. I haven’t been able to confirm whether the boys from Riverview, Sydney were all left handers.

 

I’ve had to cheat for the rest of this piece, as the 1994 edition didn’t have the full quota of photos (why not?) so their 1993 version will need to do.

vic 93

This must be one of the Easton state squads. A quirk of this 93 replacement is that Darren Lehmann gets another gig here as would Paul Nobes if had bothered to turn up for the photo. They both missed their West End and returned to Adelaide. I moved to Melbourne soon after – a fair swap I suppose. Plenty of classy cricketers here, plus Liam Pickering. I couldn’t be bothered redoing the scan, don’t think those last two names need the publicity.

Qld 93

Was Qld Uni player and future Test umpire Bruce Oxenford a mate of J.T Harms? Let’s hope so for the sake of my readership stats. I wonder whether Thommo was from the Ray Steele school of team management? He looks to be the fittest of the lot. Those shirts look like something your lawnmowing guy would wear. Whatever happened to Powers?

tas 93

Here’s 1993 Tassie. The lad from Mowbray should have taken off his helmet before this was taken. Colin Miller wasn’t too funky at that point of his career.

93 women

Here’s our national women’s team from 1993. There was a bit of women’s cricket coverage in each edition, including a Player of the Year. Some of these names have stuck in my scone, but I’m glad that there is more (but still not enough) coverage these days. (Don’t blame me for the chopped off heads in the back row). Chris Matthews is probably working on a position description for a new WACA groundsperson as I write this.

I still prefer my 70s collection of Australian Cricket and Cricketer Year Books, but if any of this nudges your noggin, let us know below.

  • All photos courtesy of the Australian Cricket Almanac 1993 or 1994, published by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation

About Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt

Saw my first SANFL game in 1967 - Dogs v Peckers. Have only ever seen the Dogs win 1 final in the flesh (1972 1st Semi) Mediocre forward pocket for the AUFC Blacks (1982-89) Life member - Ormond Netball Club -That's me on the right

Comments

  1. Wow, Swish, quite the collection. Is that Peter Clifford (NSW & Qld shield cricketer) in the Toombul team? Geez, coming up against Julian and Angel in district cricket sounds like fun.

  2. Your house is quite the library/museum Swish. Fantastic.

    Richard Chee Quee- despite his musical ambitions, one of my favourite cricketers.

    Tim Zoehrer- the housemates of a former girlfriend insisted I was his doppelganger. Never sure if I should be thrilled or otherwise.

    Lots of Di Venutos in the Hobart photo, but where was Michael?

    Brenton Opperman a good northern ‘burbs boy. Did he play for SA?

    Shaun Young of Tassie not quite the actor that Sean Young is. Top work in Blade Runner, if not Ace Ventura, Pet Detective.

    Excellent stuff. PS- Eagle Blue spectacularly awful.

  3. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Good get Dave. Thanks to @rustyjacko and @DamianSharry I have confirmation that it is *the* Peter Clifford ( who still turns out for the Toombul Over 40s)

    I’d prefer the word ‘shrine’ Mickey. I haven’t met too many bad Northern suburbs boys. Opperman didn’t earn a state cap, but did win six Talbot Smith medals in a row and played for the Aussie U/19s

  4. Great stuff, Swish.
    I too have those Australian Cricket Almanacs on my shelf.

    Fairly decent line-up that Midland-Guildford team.

  5. Swish I’d be interested in the 1991 Almanac, in particular the A Grade premiers (1990/91 season) photo as I think from memory you’d have a great connection to two of bowlers.

    Like you I spent quite some time watching Salisbury play watching in awe at the way they dominated SA cricket at Grade level and so regularly produced Shield and Test players although I don’t seem to have developed the same fascination you have with Glenn Bishop that you have. He’s been on your twitter feed a bit lately and in all of that you seem to have neglected his contribution to Central District and in particular is extraordinary soccer goal at Glenelg in the reserves one day (it was televised). Ok maybe I have developed the same fascination.

    Cheers

  6. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Thanks Smokie, you’re a good judge.

    Thanks Culls, I’ve mentioned his footy credentials elsewhere. As we know, he was the most prodigious kicking Bulldog ever, even further than Terry Phillips, Wayne Bevan or even Chris McLay. I remember Bish sticking one into the gumtrees behind the GMH end goals, I reckon he launched it from the Peter Page Holden end back pocket at the Ponderosa. I’ve worshipped him ever since he volunteered his lounge room and Thorn black and white tele so we could all watch the moon landing in ’69.

    Spleen and Monkey Face did well to overcome their 1986 Sty Council premiership hangover. I’ll save that for another piece.

  7. Luke Reynolds says

    Great stuff Swish, many fantastic names in those teams.

    Australian cricket yearbooks seem to have a limited lifespan. I have full runs of the short lived Australian Wisden and Richie Benaud’s Yearbook which was always on display when the great man was on screen. More recently there was the Cricket Australia Official Guide, which has seemed to cease.

    Whatever happened to Easton?

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