CYMS skipper Chris Novak was understandably disappointed after his side was funneled out of Orange District Cricket Association's title race in last weekend's preliminary final but, post-game, he made a point of highlighting two other feelings he had - pride, and excitement.
The pride came from the way his side faced up to the pre-season critics who wrote them off after a swag of player turnover, and the way a number of his young troops stepped up in their place.
The excitement came from the development he's seen, and how well that bodes with the club moving into a milestone summer, in 2019-20 the CYMS club will celebrate its 75th anniversary.
"No one gave us a chance (to contend) at the start of the year and I think we proved everyone wrong," Novak said, moments after delivering a stirring post-game speech to his troops regarding next year's anniversary season.
"We had a lot of young guys stepping up, and guys stepping up from second grade too.
"Guys like Nick Murphy, who only turned 15 this year, made his debut and Luke D'Elboux came into our team from Waratahs where he was playing third grade. [Tom West] really stood up and even the more-experienced young guys like [Tom Belmonte] stood up too."
Those youngsters had big shoes to fill too, with players of the calibre of Dave Neil, Mick Delaney, Hamish Finlayson and Curtis Free all among those who played vital roles in premiership seasons but have since moved on.
This summer was Novak's first in the top job too and he said he'd "love" to do the job again in next year's milestone season, but while he'll stick his hand to lead again he did say it's far from a foregone conclusion.
"I thoroughly enjoyed it and the guys were fantastic with all the support they gave me so I'd love to do the job again, especially in such a big year being the 75th anniversary," he said.
"But that's not up to me, it's not for me to decide. That's something for the committee to decide going into next season and I'm happy for whoever they think is the best person for the job to do it, I'll support whoever that is.
"Honestly, we had five guys in our side this year who could've been captain. Hugh Le Lievre has an incredible cricket brain and gave me a lot of support.
"Guys like Adam Smith, Sonny (Day-Tennant) and Micky Hannelly, they all gave me a lot of support and ideas, they have their input and in a way the [leadership] was a team effort anyway."
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