The Bathurst Orange Inter District Cricket season has come to an end and, with Orange City no doubt still celebrating their title win, we've done what every cricketer does constantly throughout any given summer - taken a deep dive into MyCricket.
But unlike those number-conscious players looking to flex - where's The Grade Cricketer when we need him? - we're here to digest and analyse those raw numbers and combine them to form the 2020-21 season's ultimate team.
In a season that had everything and finished with a grand final for the ages, there's no surprise the team of the year features players from almost every outfit.
We've put this side together largely on numbers and it's taken some jigging around to make the batting order work but, and we say so ourselves, there's not much to argue in this outfit.
We also couldn't let logic or statistics get in the way of one fairy tale selection...
BOIDC TEAM OF THE YEAR
1 | BLAKE WEYMOUTH (Orange City)
- GAMES: 14 | INN: 15 | RUNS: 567 | AVE: 43.62 | 100s: 1 | 50s: 3 | HS: 129no
Weymouth was the second-highest run-scorer in the competition and, at just 17, he's arguably the best bat in the competition so this was an easy choice. Non-decision, really.
His highest score, an unbeaten 129, came against Centrals in round eight and he scored all three of his other half-tons against would-be title contenders Rugby Union.
The most impressive was those was his 81 in a rain-affected preliminary final against the Bulldogs. It was as classy a knock as you'd see from any opening bat, let alone a teenager.
Without that knock, and without the diminutive left-hander in general, the Warriors wouldn't have even been at Bathurst Sportsground on grand final day.
2 | JOEY COUGHLAN (Bathurst City)
- GAMES: 11 | INN: 14 | RUNS: 440 | AVE: 33.85 | 100s: 0 | 50s: 3 | HS: 99
- OVERS: 150.3 | WICKETS: 16 | AVE: 29.69 | STR: 56.44 | 5WI: 0 | BEST: 4-29
Bathurst City's skipper partners Weymouth at the top in to form an incredibly short opening partnership, probably the smallest in stature you could come up with.
But what the pair lack in height, they made up for in runs.
Admittedly, Coughlan had a slow start to the 2020-21 summer, not passing 25 until round six but he broke the shackles after that and punched out a handful of important half-tons.
He did, brutally, fall just short of a ton twice this summer, a heart-breaking 99 against Cavaliers being his top score in his side's three-run loss to Cavaliers in round 10.
Picked up 16 handy wickets during the summer as well and would provide this side with another bowling option, although we've purely picked him as a bat.
3 | DAVE NEIL (CYMS)
- GAMES: 13 | INN: 15 | RUNS: 494 | AVE: 38 | 100s: 1 | 50s: 2 | HS: 100no
Neil acted as a rock in a young side that, largely, struggled to make a genuine impact this summer, although CYMS will be better for it in coming seasons.
Started the season with a bang by scoring back-to-back half-tons in the opening two rounds and finished the year by knocking up a superb, unbeaten ton against Kinross.
With an average of 38, we'd wager Neil would agree he should've gone bigger with a handful of other starts but nonetheless a strong season from the noodling CYMS veteran.
He once again proved class is permanent, so much so he was our only real option to bat at three here.
4 | RUSSELL GARDNER (City Colts)
- GAMES: 13 | INN: 12 | RUNS: 665 | AVE: 73.89 | 100s: 1 | 50s: 6 | HS: 156no
Another veteran who hasn't let age slow him down, Gardner ended the summer as the highest run-scorer and went on to claim player of the year honours.
Banged out more than 600 runs at better than 70 despite starting the summer with a globe, which proved one of just three genuine failures with the bat.
He passed 50 in seven consecutive innings between rounds four and 12 and turned one of those into a magnificent, unbeaten 156 against Centrals in round five as well.
We could wax lyrical about Gardner's efforts, particularly considering his side missed the finals.
5 | CONNOR SLATTERY (St Pat's Old Boys)
- GAMES: 12 | INN: 11 | RUNS: 464 | AVE: 66.29 | 100s: 2 | 50s: 2 | HS: 121
- OVERS: 106.2 | WICKETS: 14 | AVE: 19.5 | STR: 45.57 | 5WI: 0 | BEST: 3-24
One of several Western Zone incumbents in this side, Slattery was strong with both bat and ball this summer, so much so he acts as this side's frontline spinner too.
Yes, we've picked an all-rounder as the frontline spinner.
He backed up his pair of centuries with a couple of half-tons throughout the year but, as his average of almost 70 suggests, there is a slight feeling of 'what if' surrounding Slattery from the 2020-21 summer.
Not because he didn't capitalise on starts, no, more because he quite often didn't get the chance to.
With his side's strong performances and Slattery batting in the middle order he finished not out a number of times as the Saints ran down small totals, or games were washed out while he was still at the crease.
Could easily push higher into the order or shift lower too, depending on whatever situation this hypothetical side found itself in.
6 | BLAKE AUBIN (Centennials Bulls)
- GAMES: 13 | INN: 14 | RUNS: 426 | AVE: 42.80 | 100s: 1 | 50s: 1 | HS: 123no
Aubin is picked solely to bat in this side, despite taking the gloves all summer for Centennials Bulls, who finished 14 points adrift of the top four.
With 426 runs at 42.80, he finished the summer as the competition's sixth highest run-scorer behind this side's top five so it's an easy choice to slot him in here. Like Slattery, he could easily move up or down too.
Notched an excellent, unbeaten ton against City Colts in the early stages of the competition and while he did slow down quite a bit towards the back end of the summer, he's done enough to earn a spot here.
No politics here, Blakey.
7 | ANDREW BROWN (St Pat's Old Boys - wicketkeeper)
- GAMES: 13 | INN: 13 | RUNS: 401 | AVE: 30.8 | 100s: 1 | 50s: 0 | HS: 102
- CATCHES: 16 | STUMPINGS: 1
The Saints' wicketkeeper takes the gloves for us here after a strong season behind the stumps and another solid summer with the bat as well.
Proved to be the Saints' second highest run-scorer and punched out a nice ton against Centennials Bulls towards the back end of the summer, although there could be a question of whether he'd be effective batting seven here.
Brown opens up for St Pat's, did so in all but one game this summer, but we're confident he's versatile enough to slide quite a way down the order and still get the job done.
If not, we'd just bump him up and give Aubin the gloves, the Centennials' gloveman was the next best wicketkeeper anyway.
8 | ED MORRISH (Orange City - captain)
- GAMES: 13 | OVERS: 115.5 | WICKETS: 26 | AVE: 14.77 | STR: 26.73 | 5WI: 1 | BEST: 8-56
The first picked in this side so there's not much point explaining it, we will anyway though.
Ranked third on the competition's bowling list in terms of aggregate, but when you consider all the numbers he's still the BOIDC's premier quick, the burly left-armer's average and strike rate are bordering on elite.
His output with the bat wasn't as good as previous years, which pushed him into the all-rounder category, but he wasn't required to punch out big runs as his teammates lifted around him.
Obviously he captains this side, his won premierships in all three of his seasons in charge at Orange City and the side's now won four-in-a-row, so that's not even up for debate.
Claimed eight scalps against Rugby Union in one innings but arguably his best showing was against City Colts in round 12, he finished with game figures of 7-62 as the Warriors picked up a vital outright win that had a huge impact on the final standings.
His early scalps in the grand final went a long way to winning his side the title too.
9 | MITCH TAYLOR (St Pat's Old Boys)
- GAMES: 12 | OVERS: 156.3 | WICKETS: 29 | AVE: 16.62 | STR: 32.38 | 5WI: 2 | BEST: 5-52
Along with Slattery and Morrish, Taylor is another of this side's Western incumbents and in another super summer the Saints' quick proved exactly why he's considered among the Zone's best.
His average is bettered only by Morrish but he finished above his left-arm counterpart in terms of aggregate, snaring the second-highest number of scalps with 29.
A proven performer, Taylor was once again consistent in spearheading the Saints' attack and picked up a couple of five-wicket hauls along the way in 2020-21, in back-to-back games towards the end of the summer in fact.
Morrish might have a tough decision as to whether Taylor, or the next bloke, shares the new ball with him in this side, but that's a pretty good problem to have.
10 | CLINT MOXON (Bathurst City Redbacks)
- GAMES: 12 | OVERS: 168.5 | WICKETS: 30 | AVE: 17.10 | STR: 33.77 | 5WI: 1 | BEST: 7-25
The competition's premier quick this summer, in terms of wickets taken.
Topped that list with 30 scalps from a Herculean 168.5 overs and did everything he could to inspire his side to a miracle finals appearance, producing his best figures of 7-25 against Kinross in round seven.
He actually finished that game with absurd figures of 9-41 after taking another two in the second dig.
A picture of consistency and Redbacks' heart and soul with the ball, he finished a full 13 scalps ahead of the Bathurst side's next best.
11 | HUGH McINTYRE (Rugby Union)
- GAMES: 12 | OVERS: 115.3 | WICKETS: 26 | AVE: 17.08 | STR: 26.65 | 5WI: 2 | BEST: 6-23
Somewhat of a surprise packet, really, considering his past numbers.
That's not to say he was ever less than excellent for Kinross, but he did max out with 11 scalps for the students in season 2018-19 before linking with Rugby Union.
He picked up 26 this summer though and almost rivalled Morrish in terms of average and strike rate, to suggest he may have been somewhat of a sleeping giant while he was playing for Kinross.
McIntyre had a fair old time against his former side this summer too. He started the season by taking 6-23 against Kinross in round one and backed that up with another bagful against the two blues in round 11.
Rounds out a superb fast-bowling quartet in this side.
12th MAN | TROY O'KEEFFE (Orange City)
- GAMES: 3 | INN: 3 | RUNS: 38 | AVE: 19.00 | 100s: 0 | 50s: 0 | HS: 28no
After his effort in the grand final O'Keeffe was obviously going to get picked somewhere in this side and if you don't think he should be here, well, we just don't really care.
His match-winning 28 not out came from 119 balls under a mountain of pressure and he was unflappable in the nearly two hours he spent at the crease with Harry McGregor, who made 1 not out from 48 balls.
It's the context of this one that makes it so special though.
Behind Lachlan Coyte, Jaymes Thomas and then Ben Findlay, this bloke was technically Orange City's fourth choice gloveman and only came into the side in the final round of the regular season after starting the summer in third grade spinner.
On top of that, across the eight seasons prior to this summer O'Keeffe played just 11 games of first grade cricket and did so as a fill-in every time, predominantly plying his trade in Orange's second grade competition.
He's the ultimate example of a player who turns up regardless of what grade he's named in, tries his guts out and does his absolute best for the side. You couldn't have written this script any better.
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