Victorian Premier Cricket

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Victorian Premier Cricket
Victorian Premier Cricket Logo.jpg
Administrator Cricket Victoria
Format 2-day matches (with 1-day matches)
First tournament 1906–07
Tournament format home and away
Number of teams 18
Current champion Fitzroy Doncaster
Most successful 19 Melbourne
Most runs Australia Warren Ayres (15,277)[1]
Most wickets Australia Bert Ironmonger (862)[2]

Victorian Premier Cricket is a club cricket competition in the state of Victoria administered by Cricket Victoria. Each club fields four teams (firsts through to fourths) of adult players and usually play on weekends and public holidays. Matches are played on turf wickets under limited-time rules, with most results being decided on a first-innings basis. Outstanding players in the competition are selected to play for the Victorian Bushrangers at first-class and List A level, in the Sheffield Shield and Ryobi Cup competitions respectively. The competition commenced in the 1906–07 season when it was known as "District cricket", and was renamed in 1990. Separate competitions for one-day matches (2002–03) and Twenty20 (2005–06) were later established.

History[edit]

Inter-club cricket in Melbourne had its beginnings during the 1850s, with matches arranged on an informal basis. The newspapers usually decided the season's best team via the consensus of journalists. In 1870, the Challenge Cup was introduced, beginning an era of more structured competition.

For the 1889–90 season, a program of Pennant Matches was devised over eight rounds, which began the era of club competition recognisable today. The original competing teams were Carlton, East Melbourne, Essendon, Fitzroy, Melbourne, North Melbourne, Port Melbourne, Richmond, St Kilda, South Melbourne, University and Williamstown. There were no restriction on the recruitment of players and the stronger clubs (such as East Melbourne, Melbourne and South Melbourne) attracted the leading players, and other teams remained very weak. By the turn of the twentieth century, the unevenness of the competition resulted in a lack of public support.

The solution was found in "electorate" or "District" cricket whereby players needed a residential qualification to play for their club. In 1903, a VCA sub-committee recommended the implementation of the system. Due to many differences of opinion (most notably, the powerful Melbourne Cricket Club dissented), District cricket did not commence until 1906.

The twelve inaugural District teams were Carlton, Collingwood (newly formed), East Melbourne, Essendon, Fitzroy, Hawksburn (which became Prahran the following year), Melbourne, North Melbourne, Richmond, St Kilda, South Melbourne and University. A promotion and relegation system between two grades was originally envisioned, and the premier club of second grade, Northcote, was promoted for 1907–08. However, last-placed Collingwood was not relegated and the idea dispensed with. The second grade was re-constituted as the Victorian Sub-District competition, comprising Brighton, Caulfield, Coburg, Elsternwick, Hawthorn, Malvern, Port Melbourne and Williamstown.

The uneven number of teams necessitated a bye, which remained 1929–30 when the VCA Colts team was included. The Colts team competed for eleven seasons but disbanded during World War II. Matches continued through the war (although they were not for points) and Footscray was admitted for 1948–49 to eliminate the bye. The next expansion occurred in 1974 when two clubs representing outer-suburban areas, Ringwood and Waverley, were promoted from Sub-District. Eighteen sides have participated since 1993–94 when teams from Geelong and the Mornington Peninsula were admitted. The finals system, previously consisting of four teams, was enlarged to a final six in 1997–98 season, later changing to a final eight.

Current clubs[edit]

Colours Club Emblem Formed Home ground 1st XI
titles
First
competed
Note
Black, White, Green and Gold Camberwell Magpies Magpies 1906 Camberwell Sports Ground, Camberwell 4 1906–07 Inaugural club (Collingwood); amalgamated with Camberwell (Sub-District) in 1996-97
Carlton Blues 1864 Princes Park, North Carlton 8 1906–07 Inaugural club
Casey-South Melbourne Swans 1862 Casey Fields, Cranbourne East 3 1906–07 Inaugural club (South Melbourne), relocated and renamed in 2005-06
Dandenong Panthers 1908 Shepley Oval, Dandenong 2 1974–75 Promoted from Sub-District in 1974-75 as Waverley; amalgamated with and moved to Dandenong (Sub-District) in 1989-90 as Waverley-Dandenong; renamed Dandenong-Waverley in 1992-93; renamed Dandenong in 1994-95
Essendon Bombers 1872 Windy Hill, Essendon 2 1906–07 Inaugural club
Fitzroy Doncaster Lions Schramm's Reserve, Doncaster 10 1906–07 Inaugural club (Fitzroy); amalgamated with Doncaster (Sub-District) in 1986-87
Footscray-Edgewater Bulldogs Merv Hughes Oval, Footscray 2 1948–49 Promoted from Sub-District in 1948 as Footscray; renamed in 2004-05
Frankston Peninsula Heat AH Butler Oval, Frankston 0 1993–94 Promoted from Sub-District in 1993-94
Geelong Cats Kardinia Park, Geelong 0 1993–94 Promoted from Sub-District in 1993-94
Greenvale Kangaroos Greenvale Recreation Reserve, Greenvale 0 1906–07 Inaugural club (North Melbourne); temporarily amalgamated with Geelong (sub-district) as North Melbourne–Geelong from 1985-86 until 1987-88; amalgamated with and moved to Greenvale in 2013-14[3]
Kingston Hawthorn Hawks 1860 Walter Galt Reserve, Parkdale 9 1906–07 Inaugural club (East Melbourne); amalgamated with and moved to Hawthorn (Sub-District) in 1921-22 as Hawthorn-East Melbourne; moved to Waverley and renamed Hawthorn in 1989-90; amalgamated with Monash University (Sub-District) in 2001-02 as Hawthorn-Monash University and moved to the Monash University Sports Complex in Clayton in 2004; amalgamated with Kingston Saints (Sub-District) in 2015-16 and moved to Parkdale as Kingston Hawthorn.
Melbourne Demons 1838 Albert Cricket Ground, Melbourne 20 1906–07 Inaugural club, but ineligible for the premiership until 1914–15
Monash Tigers 1854 Central Reserve, Glen Waverley 6 1906–07 Inaugural club (Richmond); relocated to Glen Waverley in 2010-11, and changed its trading name to Monash Tigers in 2013-14 (although the club is legally still known as Richmond).
Northcote Dragons Bill Lawry Oval, Northcote 5 1907–08 Promoted from Sub-District 1907-08
Prahran True Blues Toorak Park, Armadale 7 1906–07 Inaugural club (Hawksburn); renamed Prahran in 1907-08.
Ringwood Rams Jubilee Park, Ringwood 3 1974–75 Promoted from Sub-District 1974
St Kilda Saints 1855 Junction Oval, St Kilda 18 1906–07 Inaugural club
University Students 1856 University of Melbourne campus, Parkville 3 1906–07 Inaugural club

Premierships correct to the end of 2016/17 season.

Ryder Medal[edit]

First presented in 1972–73, the award for the best player of the season is named after Jack Ryder, the former Australian captain who had a long and distinguished career with Collingwood.

Season Player Team Biography link
1972–73 Ron Bird Collingwood [1]
1973–74 John Grant Essendon [2]
1974–75 John Grant Essendon
1975–76 Keith Stackpole Carlton
1976–77 John Shepherd Footscray [3]
1977–78 Keith Stackpole Carlton
1978–79 Keith Stackpole Carlton
1979–80 Barry Watson Footscray [4]
1980–81 Gary Cosier Northcote
1981–82 Mick Taylor South Melbourne
1982–83 John Douglas Carlton [5]
1983–84 Trevor Laughlin Collingwood
1984–85 Andrew Wildsmith Northcote [6]
1985–86 Michael Ephraims Prahran [7]
1986–87 Warren Whiteside St Kilda [8]
1987–88 Wayne N. Phillips South Melbourne
1988–89 Richard McCarthy North Melbourne [9]
1989–90 Warren Whiteside St Kilda
1990–91 Warren Whiteside St Kilda
1991–92 Mark Ridgway Fitzroy/Doncaster [10]
1992–93 Mark Leehane Essendon [11]
1993–94 Gary Watts Fitzroy/Doncaster [12]
1994–95 Warren Ayres Melbourne
1995–96 Brendan Joyce Fitzroy/Doncaster [13]
1996–97 Ian Wrigglesworth Carlton [14]
1997–98 PQ Harper University
1998–99 Abdul Qadir Carlton
1999–2000 Carl Hooper Carlton
2000–01
(tied)
Paul Collingwood
DM Dempsey
Richmond
Ringwood
2001–02 Warren Ayres Melbourne
2002–03 CBD Street Fitzroy/Doncaster
2003–04
(tied)
RA Bartlett
Adam Dale
Northcote
North Melbourne
2004–05 Simon Dart Hawthorn/Monash Uni.
2005–06
(tied)
MD Allen
Graeme Rummans
Carlton
St Kilda
2006–07 Graeme Rummans St Kilda
2007–08 Steven Spoljaric Hawthorn/Monash Uni.
2008–09 Gareth Cross St Kilda
2009–10 Graeme Rummans St Kilda
2010–11 Theo Doropoulos Northcote
2011–12 Clive Rose Casey-South Melbourne
2012-13 Brenton McDonald Melbourne
2013-14 James Miller Prahran
2014-15 Ian Holland Ringwood
2015-16 Steve Taylor Northcote

John Scholes Medal[edit]

Presented in season 2001–02 under the name of Cricket Victoria Medal, the John Scholes medal is awarded to the best player in the Victorian Premier Cricket 1st XI final. The name was changed for the 2003–04 season.[4]

Season Player Team
2001–02 JL Travaglia Fitz Donc
2002–03 GC Rummans St Kilda
2003–04 GC Rummans St Kilda
2004–05 TDB O'Sullivan St Kilda
2005–06 M Klinger St Kilda
2006–07 PM Boraston Dandenong
2007–08 MR King Ringwood
2008–09 ST Gilmour Ringwood
2009–10 RJ Cooper Melbourne
2010–11 JL Pattinson Dandenong
2011–12 WD Sheridan Richmond
2012-13 Matthew Begbie Melbourne CC
2013-14 S Dissanayaka Footscray-Edgewater
2014-15 Ian Holland Ringwood
2015-16 Peter Dickson Fitzroy Doncaster
2016-17 Matthew Brown Melbourne

Amalgamations[edit]

In the post-war period, the competition has faced the challenge of periodic restructuring to reflect the growing metropolitan area of Melbourne. This has been achieved by amalgamating and relocating clubs. In 1985 Fitzroy moved its base to Doncaster, forming Fitzroy/Doncaster. Similarly, in 1989, Hawthorn/East Melbourne relocated to Glen Waverley in the eastern suburbs, and was later renamed Hawthorn/Waverley in 1994. The club merged with Sub-District club Monash University, to become Hawthorn/Monash University seven years later. The move of Hawthorn/East Melbourne caused Waverley to move to Dandenong, and the new team played as Waverley/Dandenong, but dropped Waverley from its name for the 1994–95 season.

Two more inner-suburban clubs have reorganised. Prior to the 1996–97 season, Collingwood left Victoria Park and amalgamated with Sub-District club Camberwell to become Camberwell Magpies based at the Camberwell Sports Ground, while prior to the 2000–01 season, Footscray became Footscray/Victoria University. The latter club is now known as Footscray Edgewater due to a unique business partnership with the residential development adjoining its home ground, the Merv Hughes Oval.

Administration[edit]

Victorian Premier Cricket is run by the Cricket Victoria's Pennant Committee, which deals with grounds, fixtures, playing dates, venues, umpires, ladders, player eligibility and registrations, disputes, rules, etc., are overseen by the Pennant Committee. The Pennant Committee comprises five delegates elected at the AGM of Cricket Victoria held every August. Currently, the members are Russell Thomas (Chairman), Kevan Carroll, John Malligan, John McConville and Ken Stone. Matters concerning player behaviour are dealt with a tribunal convened by Cricket Victoria and is made up of an independent chairman two Pennant Committee members, providing that their club is not involved in the match in question.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Ayres chasing Premier record in the game - Cricket". Theage.com.au. 2005-01-22. Retrieved 2017-02-28. 
  2. ^ "Victorian Premier Cricket". Premier.cricketvictoria.com.au. Retrieved 2017-02-28. 
  3. ^ Liam McAleer (31 December 2013). "Hume Leader looks back on the biggest stories of 2013". Hume Leader. Retrieved 7 April 2014. 
  4. ^ "Victorian Premier Cricket". Premier.cricketvictoria.com.au. Retrieved 2017-02-28. 

External links[edit]