The Kiwis arrived at various times in Australia and officially united at the Sydney Cricket ground on 3rd November, 2011. They were met and welcomed by a delegation from the Hunter in Terry New, Trevor Holden and Bob Kerr. A tour of the Football Stadium, the SCG, lunch at Fox Studios and a quick drive through the CBD and then up the F3 to Maitland where the tourists were met by their hosts.

Friday 4th started with a Civic Reception by the Mayor of Maitland and a Past President and current member of Rutherford Telarah Rotary, Peter Blackmore.  Mayor Peter also presented the tourists with gifts, which was greatly appreciated.



[ District Governor 9670 Janette Jackson bowling the first ball of the day at Robins oval on Friday 4th]

At around 10.30am play got underway at Robins Oval in Maitland Park and what a wonderful venue it turned out to be. The Australian Side had members who had travelled from as far as Albury/Laverton to participate. Unfortunately the Kiwis won this encounter quite easily, despite the efforts of Kevin Scanlon, Bruce Pooley and Keith Lawrence putting in good scores and quite a few bowlers taking some wickets. Fellowship was great and a few drinks (and maybe a tall story or two) were enjoyed after the game. The result was in the balance for some time but I think it can be summed up best when the Captain of the Australian side was asked to nominate who was the player who contributed most to the Kiwis winning, he nominated an Australian, me. I guess I need more time in the nets, or less time on the pitch.

On Saturday evening, Rothbury Fire Brigade were our hosts, for a wonderful meal. Once again fellowship was the winner, and we were thrilled when Kate Daly was able to make it. Kate’s husband Peter, had been the reason why IFCR has a strong following in our District and he had a very close association with many of the tourists as does Kate.

Image  Image

[ A view of the shed as everyone is eating their meal.]

Table of (l to r), Dan Healy and Tom White (both tourists), Val Calvey and David Lennon (Cessnock Club) Kate Daly, (special guest) and Bruce Pooley, Australian President of IFCR

Sunday hostilities commenced at around 10.30am. This was Bruce Pooley’s 100th IFCR game and he was given a guard of honour by both teams when he went out to bat.


[ Bruce Pooley’s 100th Game for IFCR given a guard of honour by all players, including Will from Sweden on the right ]

The Kiwis batted well and set a target of 166. They had a ring in with Rutherford Telarah’s Exchange Student, Will helping to make up the numbers. He excelled hitting a four off his first ball faced in Cricket and took a spectacular catch in the outfield to dismiss our top scorer from Friday, Kevin Scanlon. Keith Lawrence top scored with 40 (retired), hitting a six of his last ball. But it was to no avail and we only scored 155.

A number of potential new members played and enjoyed the day. Both days were catered for the morning and afternoon teas by members of the Rotary Club of Maitland Sunrise, and the BBQ on the Sunday by Rutherford Telarah Rotarians.

On the Friday we were umpired by Terry New (Rutherford Telarah) and Barry Knight (Dungog) whilst on Sunday Terry was joined by Ross Lidbury (Rutherford-Telarah). As much as I would like to blame the umpires, it was not through them that we lost both games. Each did a great job and enjoyed the banter that was directed at them, giving quite a bit back as well.

At the end of each match the Captain of each team nominates a player from the other side as the player of the match. On the Sunday Keith Lawrence deservedly received that award and made a short but appropriate speech.

Sadly, less than 5 minutes later, Keith collapsed and subsequently died from what turned out to be a ruptured Aorta. Trevor Lynch of East Maitland Club, and two of the Kiwis, Margaret Niven and Paul Warren worked feverishly to revive Keith, but it was to no avail. In my eyes these people were heros and gave Keith every possible chance.

Keith was a Past member and Past President of the Rotary Club of Rutherford Telarah and is survived by his wife Robyn and children Karen, Rodney, Kerry (who is pregnant with their first grandchild) and Kitty.

Sadly missed but he goes out as player of the match and a six of his last ball.


[ Keith Lawrence batting, and receiving his player of the match award from NZ Captain Barry Bloomaart, with David Lennon and Dianne Kerr in the background. ]

On matters international, those of us who organised this event are extremely grateful for the comradeship and support that the locals and the visitors gave us throughout the tour but more importantly on Sunday afternoon.