October 28, 2009

The Scottsdale Boys come to town.

The story of how the farmers of Scottsdale in north east Tasmania had come to the rescue of landholders in the Yea district and Western Gippsland after the February 7, 2009 bushfires with a total of 37 semi-trailer loads of hay to feed starving cattle is becoming well known.

Less well known is the cricket spin-off which has resulted from this connection.  The local social cricket group known as the Scottsdale Foresters were coming to Strath Creek for a game against the local IFCR team.

The visitors made it into more than just a one day jaunt playing, and beating, the Yea Rotary golf team before awakening on Saturday, October 24 to a perfect spring day – blue sky. a light breeze and a comfortable temperature.

The cricket was played as a 40 over per side game with a substantial interval for lunch and some other activities,

The local IFCR team batted first and compiled 136 runs for the loss of 14 wickets.  Warren Fricke was best with 34 while Adam Hall (a ring-in from Scottsdale) contributed 31.  Four run-outs did not help.  Greg Walker was the best bowler finishing with 4 wickets for 8 runs.

After a delightful lunch provided by Anne McQueen and her helpers our host, Don McQueen introduced the special guests – RC of Yea president Rodney Ridd, D9790 DGE and RC of Yea member, David Anderson and Peter Partridge, Mayor of the Shire of Dorset in Tasmania (the area which includes Scottsdale).

Peter accepted a badge provided by  the Mayor of the Shire of Murrindindi (the area including Yea) as a memento of the co-operation between the two areas following the bushfires.

Don McQueen presented a specially-created trophy to Rtn John Lett from Scottsdale in recognition of the Tasmanians' win in the Friday golf.

After these presentations, Rotarian Murray Orton did a side-splitting short comedy routine and Anne McQueen sang two popular songs.

To top it all off, four members of RC of Yea, Russell Hogg, Charles Rattray, John Handsaker and Terry Hubbard used the the tune ‘Galway Bay’ as the basis of a specially written few verses which explained the Scottsdale/ Yea connection very clearly.  It’s set out below for the record.

                           Ode to Scottsdale    

                       (TUNE: Galway Bay: Key: G  Blow: D)

If you ever go across the sea to Tassie
And you are on the lookout for some hay
You could do a whole lot worse than visit Scottsdale
Where sixty farmers gave it all away

They had heard about the bushfires in Victoria
Especially at a little place called Yea
With starving stock and blackened burnt out pastures
Scottsdale farmers came and saved the day

Led by Frosty and his little boy called Jamie
In his brand new truck he’d bought two days before
They had travelled on the Spirit of Tasmania
And dropped the bloody lot at our back door

So we’ve gathered here today and told the story
And shared your love and hospitality
For we’ll ne’er forget you farmers of Taswegia
Your great big hearts and generosity

So to all of you we say a heartfelt thank you
And wonder if you’ll still be full of cheer
When you realize that when we have departed
We’ll have eaten all your food and drunk your beer!

Mayor Peter Partridge responded with three verses of his own on behalf of the Tasmanians.

So we journeyed from our homes to Yea this morning
And it’s neither fame nor fortune that we seek
It’s your company and the chance to share the glory
When Scottsdale wins the cricket at Strath Creek!

To all our new found friends in Murrindindi
We hope you’ll find the time to call again
Our doors are always open down in Tassie
And it’s just two hours by road and one by plane!

May God bless each one of you and all your family
May your hearts be filled with joy and trouble free
If a helping hand is needed in the future
Just remember you’ll find friends in Rotary!

After all that cricket resumed.  Scottsdale batted slowly at the start but a gradual build-up of momentum saw their team pass the IFCR team’s score with 9/154 from their 40 overs.  Wayne Harper (36*) and Greg Walker (36) were the best performers for the winners.

At the end of the day the newly-minted cricket trophy was handed over to Scottsdale skipper, Peter Fysh.

At the end all agreed that it was a great day.  May the return affair next year be as good.