A Perfect Day on Petrie Paddock
Round 2 vs Chatswood
To all our beloved sponsors, parents, friends, supporters, doctors, sports physiotherapists, team psychologists, coaches, Max from the Light Brigade, and the charcuterie champion curating the cheese boards at Easts on Saturday… we’re BACK for the 4th edition of the 2022 Circular.
It was Saturday the 30th of April, and once again the Oysters were on the move. After another week of La Niña deciding to drench the east coast of our harbour city (which deserves to sparkle in the sunlight!), many of us Oysters were recreating Tim Robbin’s iconic cinema moment from The Shawshank Redemption, by ripping off our clothing and crying out to the cloud Gods; “Why oh why!! How much longer before this eternal suffering of rain soaked weekends will end?!”
Alas with both Lyne and Rushcutters washed out, a synthetic saviour came to us in our hour of need. The glorious Easts Rugby Club, who kindly offered up the hallowed fields of Andrew Pretire Oval for our game against Chatswood. Nestled a sand wedge distance from the esteemed Woollahra Golf Club, the Oysters were overjoyed to return to the fields where we won our very first grand final back in our inaugural 2020 season.
Exhibit A: Our Synthetic Saviour
As many of us Oysters are in fact country boys, born of the land, with red dirt flowing deep within our veins, it didn’t take long before many of us realised that this field felt a little different underfoot! It was nothing like our Sir Walter backyards where we spent our youth, kicking a football until the verandah lights would flick on, before Mum would cooee from the back porch that dinner was ready and that we should come inside for lamb chops and two vege! Ahhhh nostalgia…
On no this field was revolutionary! And whilst it looked like a field and it sounded like a field, this 100m x 50m patch of park was unlike anything many of us had ever set our Asics boots on before! This paddock was very green, very sturdy, highly UV resistant and it seemed to embrace fast feet that wished to move at pace. Perfect for an afternoon of Oysters football!
The on-ground and horticulture team here at The Circular quickly conducted some research and were astounded to learn that the oval was in fact, synthetic!! Engineered by the Grass Scientists at FieldTurf (yes we are still in the market for an Official Artificial Turf Sponsor for season 2022), this field was hand sewn with exclusively patented FieldTurf fibre technology, the best artificial grass in the oval making industry. Precision engineered and boasting superior aesthetics, I believe we speak for every Oyster when we say this surface certainly offered a most beautiful natural-looking landscape, and would enable us to play our favourite brand of footy. Fast AND free!
An excited couple of dozen Oysters made their way down to Woollahra Oval No. 1 on Saturday afternoon, buoyed by the privilege of playing at a fantastic venue and at the climax of a full afternoon schedule of rugby. The rugby faithful had heard whispers that the Oysties were in action, with a massive crowd turning out which included (but was not limited to) Easts rugby die-hards, a raucous third birthday party which included a jumping castle AND a ball pit, the inaugural social outing and season kick-off for our Pearls netball team and of course our rusted-on Oysters fans (good to have a Biscoe back on the sidelines in 2022).
After yet another weather impacted training week, the coaching team were impressed at the squad’s focus and concentration in the warm-up. This translated nicely into the first passage of the game, with direct running complementing some lovely wide passing through the middle of the park, resulting in an Oyster migration up the pitch. Harrison ‘H Willy’ Williams was rewarded with a try after some strong running and offloading, burrowing over from short range. English import James Read also looked deadly on the right wing, collecting a delicate pill from flyhalf David Robertson and beating the would-be cover defense to score our second after 13 minutes.
Commendations must also be given to inside centre Nicholas Stubbs, who was proving a handful through the middle of the park for the Chatswood opposition. Stubbsy looked dangerous with ball in hand, and was the beneficiary of a great break from skipper Gus McClelland, who found Stubbs on his outside and we had our third after 20 minutes.
We really began to hit our straps at this point, and Chatswood were the unfortunate victims of some hellacious running rugby from the Oystermen. We went into the half 33 points to the good.
Two exceptional scoring plays must be highlighted in the second half, as we continued to pile on the points. Off the second half kick off, super sub Lachy Argiris found his fellow Novocastrian Hamish Lorang who ran a lovely line off his hip, slicing through the defence. Hamo then found Harri Greville on his outside, who showed pace well beyond his years and the number on his back to make a break up the left of the pitch. Not deterred by an atrocious earlier attempt at a grubber, Grev deftly poked the ball through on his left foot for Hamish who regathered, and was stopped just short of the line. It was Will Evans, who continued his commanding return to the rugby arena, who was Johnny on the spot at the prevailing ruck and dived over for his first five pointer in Oyster colours.
If that try wasn’t one of the best in Oyster history, the next had to be up there as well. A scrum 70 metres out from the Chatswood line did not deter the Oyster boys from attacking, with a sharp backline move releasing speedster Hamish on the left touchline. With cover coming across, Hamish put in a beautiful chip over the top for flanker Tom Mencinsky, who backed up strongly from the preceding scrum, stiff armed the final cover man and finished off an adventurous bit of play from the Oysties.
Final score ended up with Oysters 73 - Chatswood 0.
The coaching staff would like to immensely thank the following for what was a cracking afternoon of footy:
- Chatswood Rugby: we were cognisant of the fact a fair few boys backed up and played the best part of two games on Saturday, and very much appreciate the work. Best of luck for the middle part of the season.
- Easts Rugby Club: Not only was the venue brilliant for the afternoon, we also loved having our ‘Oyster 2nds’ clap us on to the pitch (a huge novelty for us) and the friendly faces and atmosphere down at Woollahra Oval.
- Our faithful supporters, including the Pearls netball team, parents, friends and associates alike.
- Big shout out also to the kid who asked to run the tee out for us. Not sure he knew what he signed up for after we scored our eleventh try for the afternoon, nonetheless a stellar job.
We look to carry this momentum over to our first away fixture this week, as we travel to the North Shore to take on the Northern Saints at Hassall Park.
Oysters Netball Team
There have been murmurs for a while now about Oyster expansion, as we continue to assert our sporting excellence on the greater Sydney catchment area. The first step in this world dominance was the creation of the Oysters Netball Team.
A spirited group of Pearls Girls have banded together to enter into a Monday night netball competition under the Oyster banner. To say this shook up the sport would be an understatement, as the Oyster Committee dealt with numerous calls from Netball Australia and the NSW Swifts, who were suitably concerned at their future competitiveness in the Australian netball ecosystem. To soften the blow and ease any of these (in all honesty) founded qualms - our Pearls Girls decided to register into the Mixed Monday Night competition instead of the female only one, despite not generating any male player base.
One might think this was a bit of a blunder from the organising committee, however it was actually a masterstroke in keeping the powers at be from sabotaging the Pearls inaugural premiership campaign. The team met for a social function at Woollahra Oval on Saturday afternoon, and enjoyed refreshments as strategy was discussed for their first game on Monday.
In what can only be described as an ‘Aperol fuelled 200 IQ’ play from the Pearls, they went down in their first game on Monday, taking all the heat off the Oyster brand and carving a clear path to the Premiership this season. Go well girls!
The Mclean Cup season rolls on this week with the Oysters heading to St. Ives to take on the Northern Saints. Kick off 3:15pm Hassall Park. For any North Shore locals who read the circular we hope to see you there Saturday.
Sponsors Day: 4th June.
It’s not too late to sponsor your favourite rugby club. Sponsorship ensures a VIP ticket to our match at Woollahra Oval #1 on June 4th
SAVE THE DATE: 2nd July. Woollahra Oval #1 More details to follow
Another save the date. Friday 29th July. Location TBA