The KHS Baggy Blues, 2012-2021

One of the most difficult things about moving on from Kirrawee High School will be handing over the reigns of the mighty KHS Baggy Blues. For the past 10 years, this team has given me some of my fondest memories of my time at KHS.

I would never claim to be a great coach, I simply had the privilege in sharing in a fantastic journey brought about by a golden generation of talented cricketers. I offered very little in terms of technical cricket advice. I simply believed in creating a strong team culture that would tie into the values of our great school – pride in yourself, pride in your school.

The KHS Baggy Blues is a representative team that our cricketers can enjoy playing a decent level of cricket. The captains and vice-captains led the way. Ben Williams, as the first captain, set that culture up and passed it on like a champion. And we never looked back.

I’m proud of what we have achieved. I’m proud of the brand of cricket and the brand of school pride we took all over New South Wales. I hope the 56 boys that shared in all that left or will leave school blessed with the same lifelong memories of school sport as I have been.

The original thought was to name a Best XI, but that would’ve too hard. Too many great players would’ve missed out – great players who possessed far greater cricketing ability than I ever had (so who I am to judge?). Instead, the following is a “Memorable Match XI” – the best, the most amazing, the most memorable 11 matches I had the privilege to share in as coach of the mighty Kirrawee High School Baggy Blues.

The Baggy Blues have a motto

“always believe that one wicket changes everything”

and, boy oh boy, did that mantra get us across the line in some absolutely magic matches.

Mr Mitchell’s Memorable Matches XI

NUMBER 11 – 26/2/2014 – NSWCHS Round 6 – KHS 7/150 defeated Camden HS 9/149 by 3 wickets.

Bowling first on an uncovered deck all the way out at Elderslie, Abhijeet Mangipudi led the way snaring a majestic 4/13. But the feeling was that we let the opposition get away at the end a bit as we failed to close out the innings. 150 was a tricky target on a tricky deck.

And then we were in deep trouble quickly. We lost our “big names” at the top of the order quickly – Fallins, Rose, Chapman and Dibley all gone cheaply, reeling at 4/40. But it was the Hess brothers who put together a very tidy partnership (Justin scored 37, Lachlan scored 30) to get us close to the target. Then it was our youngest player in only his second outing as a KHS Baggy Blue, one Callum Weatherall, who showed a calmness of hand and a mature match awareness beyond his years to knock around a tidy 15* to see us home. Not bad for a kid in Year 9 playing against 17 and 18 year olds. This demonstrated the depth of our squad, synonymous with the KHS Baggy Blues, that everyone could be counted on to step up when needed.

NUMBER 10 – 14/10/2016 – NSWCHS Round 2 – KHS 4/70 defeated Sydney Boys HS 68 by 6 wickets.

An anomaly in the draw saw two of the most successful schools in recent history face up in Round 2 of the Davidson Shield. And it turned out to be a day in the sun for Christian Bennett, who absolutely destroyed the Sydney Boys line up taking 5/3 from 6 overs. Devastating, simply devastating.

We chased it down without too much trouble, and it was a day to remember against a quality opposition that always adds to the sweetness of the victory. But it was CB’s day! For a student who had been on the fringe of the squad for a number of years, always gave his everything and never complained, this was a particularly sweet moment. And he has gone on to even bigger and better things in cricket since!

 

 

NUMBER 9 – 29/11/2016 – Sydney East Regional Final – KHS 7/287 defeated Engadine HS 83 by 204 runs.

Brutal from Josh Moors. The highest score for the KHS Baggy Blues was in the Sydney East Regional Final, no less. We always spoke about the fact that the tricky part is getting past our region, and Josh was at his swashbuckling best that day.

123 off just 79 deliveries (that’s a strike rate of 156!), fifteen 4’s and six 6’s. Absolutely peppering the Harold Fraser Oval picket fence and the Engadine HS attack all over the joint, setting up our second largest win by runs ever. Skipper Mitch Johnson also hit 71 that day (his best knock for the school), Jesse Newton chimed in with a well-made 32.

And then Josh went a took 3/6 with the ball, ably supported by Lachlan Johnson 3/22 and Hayden Neale (2/12), skittling Engadine 204 runs short of the target. That was one hell of a win!

NUMBER 8 – 14/11/2016 – Sydney East Semi-Final – KHS 8/139 defeated Menai HS 138 by 1 run.

After setting a disappointing 8/139 from our 40 overs, with starts all the way down our line-up, the boys absolutely snatched one out of the fire in an unforgettable 1 run win against a very strong Menai HS team. Regular wickets fell and 3 runs outs saw the Baggy Blues victorious. As is so often the case in cricket, the universe evened itself out later on in the competition as the boys were knocked out at the state quarter finals stage at the hands of Figtree HS by, you guessed it, one run.

NUMBER 7 – 30/3/2016 – NSWCHS State Final – KHS 6/91 defeated Inverell 90 by 4 wickets.

Our third trip to the Big Dance in Bathurst was marred by rainy weather. Moved off the turf wickets and on to a synthetic one, this one was a real team win.

Wickets were shared about, Jackson Devine (3/16), Lachlan Johnson (3/21) and Jesse Newton (2/12) leading the way. Angus Fallins was sharp, absolutely castling one of Inverell’s openers. A young (Year 8!) Lachlan Johnson was spinning his webs, and Tyson Gilbert took a great catch in the outfield to skittle Inverell for a total of 90.

As it so often the case in cricket finals, low totals are just not that easy for the chasing team. We kept losing wickets just as we were looking comfortable at the crease, but we got enough starts all the way down the order to get the job done, with Jesse Newton hitting the winning runs to secure our 3rd state championship! Memorable for the genuine team effort and, of course, the shield-ware returning home to KHS.

NUMBER 6 – 3/4/2013 – NSWCHS State Final – KHS 4/38 defeated Asquith Boys HS 37 by 6 wickets.

Devastatingly clinical. Every bowling and fielding change that captain Ben Williams made that day was spot on. Angus Dibley (4/0) and Benn Hallman (3/5) gave them absolutely nothing, and Asquith Boys were destroyed for just 37 runs in the state final. We got the runs by lunch time and the boys were back to their accommodation studying for their Year 12 assessment week. This demonstrates another aspect of the culture of the KHS Baggy Blues – the balance between representing their school and their academic pursuits has been pretty close to perfect (not an easy balance to master at the best of times).

NUMBER 5 – 11/11/2019 – Sydney East Regional Final – KHS 7/160 defeated Sydney Boys HS 159 by 3 wickets.

After losing out to Sydney Boys in the previous two Sydney East regional finals, this was one special. It was special because of the result, it was special because of the team performance, and it was special because of the spectacle. Seeing the Baggy Blues play to their potential on the beautiful Hurstville Oval, a first class ground, the ground where Don Bradman mastered his craft, was a sight to behold. The wickets were shared, the boys were exceptionally sharp in the field (including a famous direct hit run out to Lachlan Johnson), Kieran Weatherall put on a captaincy masterclass, and the run chase was clinical (led by a sensational 67 from Charlie Johnston). It was a sign of big things to come.

NUMBER 4 – 2/3/2020 – NSWCHS Quarter Final – KHS 131 defeated Smith’s Hill HS 116 by 15 runs.

After an underwhelming total of 131 set by the Baggy Blues, Smith’s Hill were 4/99 at the final drinks break with 10 overs remaining. The mantra of “one wicket changes everything” rung out from our dressing room as an inspired piece of captaincy saw Luke Lawless break the crucial partnership, and Hayden Neale run absolutely riot taking 6/32 to see the boys home by 15 runs. One of my favourite Baggy Blues photos ever is of vice captain Hayden Neale, taking the time at a crucial point in the match, to put his arm around and have a word with wicketkeeper Jamie Weaver, to help him refocus after missing a sharp chance behind the pegs. To witness a senior Baggy Blue look after a junior Baggy Blue like that, at a moment like that, in a match like that, was absolutely magic.

 

 

NUMBER 3 – 1/4/2014 – NSWCHS State Final  – KHS 95 defeated Pennant Hills HS 91 by 4 runs.

Fate and legends were the order of this day. In fact, this win (and the manner in which we won) absolutely set up the biggest of wins of them all the following day. We were bang average with the bat, scraping to a total of just 95 on a low and slow deck in Bathurst in the middle of Autumn. The pitch wasn’t great but we kept getting ourselves out. But when we were average with the willow, we were close to perfect with the ball. We took wickets regularly, Dan Fallins again with a bag of them (3/26), but the target still kept getting closer and closer. With the opposition at 9/91 in reply, and thinking that even a lucky edge through the slips could go for 4 and win them the state championship, Abhijeet Mangipudi comes steaming in and bowls the biggest, fattest, and straightest yorker of them to catch their batsmen as adjacent as you will ever see, sparking pure pandemonium. As the coach, I don’t even remember the umpire raising his finger, I just remember running. Running as fast as I could to bear hug Abhi as the state final hero with a superb spell of 4/21. As a student who only came to KHS from Year 11 onward, he only got one year with the Baggy Blues. But that’s what makes the legend of Abhijeet so special, causing devastation all across the state and then graduating into the mist as quickly as he arrived.

NUMBER 2 – 26/3/2014 – NSWCHS Semi-Final – KHS 0/48 defeated Corowa HS 8/83 by 10 wickets (rain reduced total of 44)

This was, by far, the longest away trip the KHS Baggy Blues have ever embarked upon. Right down to the NSW/Victoria border, the oval was right on the banks of the Murray River. One of those classic country grounds with an uncovered pitch, surrounded by gum trees.

The weather held out long enough for Corowa HS to be restricted to 8/83 off their 40 overs. Dan Fallins (3/30) and Lachlan Hess (2/9) were phenomenal. And then, two overs into our run chase, the heavens opened. We sat under the cover of the canteen awning for close to 2 hours, watching the uncovered pitch get slowly drenched, and our chances for our second state final slipping away. Given the fact that there had to be a result that day (the state final just 3 school days away in Bathurst), given the fact we had travelled 8 hours to get there and we had all checked out of our accommodation, and given the fact that if the match was declared a draw, the school to go through to the state final would be decided by a COIN TOSS (according to NSWCHS rules), things were looking dire. We were 0/18 chasing a rain-reduced total of just 44.

However, in an unforgettable moment of sportsmanship of the highest degree, the Principal of Corowa HS negotiated with his team to go out in the rain and bowl the required overs with their spinners to force a result in the match. Their school had a “once in a generation” cricket team, got all the way to the state semi-final, and had a 50/50 coin toss chance to go through to the final despite being outclassed by the KHS Baggy Blues. And they went out there and completed the match for us. Lachlan Hess hit 22* and Angus Dibley hit 21*, needing just 3 more overs to finish the job. We had qualified for our second state final in a row, and would even go on to win the ultimate prize in the Davidson Shield the following week. And it was that serious moment of class from Corowa HS that allowed that all to happen. We shook hands with the opposition with the promise that we would pay that sportsmanship forward when the opportunity arose.

Unforgettable, only school sport could write that script.

NUMBER 1 – 2/4/2014 – Davidson Shield Final – KHS 6/115 defeated The Hills Sports HS 114 by 4 wickets.

This match was just perfect. The pinnacle for the Baggy Blues, so far. Sending Hills Sports in to bat on a notoriously tough pitch early on in the day, their innings was dominated by Lachlan Hess’ best spell for the school. He took 3/18 against a star-studded Hills Sports top order, including the soon-to-become Tasmanian First Class cricketer, Jake Doran. His spell was even mentioned on Sydney morning radio by Alan Jones, that’s how much of a big a deal it was. There was big anticipation before Doran came to the crease at number 3. Lachlan Hess dropped a sharp caught and bowled chance the ball prior to dismissing him. And, even in that small amount of time between the ball before and the ball that got him, I think everyone at the ground supporting KHS simultaneously thought “Well, that was it. That’s the one chance he’ll give us all day. That could be the game right there”. Oh ye of little faith! The following ball was just perfect, seaming away to knick him off straight into the velvet hands of Jono Rose. And the boys were jubilant! There’s a great photo of that moment and you can feel the shear ecstasy of the moment in the faces of the slips cordon. And we went on to win the whole thing from there. Angus Fallins chimed in with a tidy 2/14, and the boys chased the target down calmly enough thanks to Jono Rose (38), captain Harry Chapman (28*, including the winning run off the final ball) and Abhijeet Mangipudi (1*, in his only knock for the school, a squeaky push and run to cover point on the second last ball to get Harry on strike). It was just the perfect day. And then getting team photos on the top of Mount Panaroma with our new piece of shield-ware, lifelong memories right there.

 

The Numbers

Played: 57, Won: 50, Lost: 7. Win percentage: 88%
Titles:
Mint spells:
4 x NSWCHS State Champions (2013, 2014, 2016, 2020)

1 x Davidson Shield Champions (2014)

1 x NSWCHS State Quarterfinalists (2017)

5 x Sydney East Regional Champions (2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2019)

7 x Sydney East Regional Finalists (2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)

3 x T20 Cups (2016, 2017, 2018)

6/16, Angus Fallins vs. Edmund Rice College, 4/9/2014, All Schools Quarter Final.

6/18, Joshua Moors vs. Picnic Point HS, 21/2/2017, Round 6.

6/23, Daniel Fallins vs. Heathcote HS, 18/12/2013, Sydney East Regional Final.

6/32, Hayden Neale vs. Smith’s Hill HS, 2/3/2020, NSWCHS Quarter Final.

5/1, Angus Dibley vs. Tempe HS, 16/3/2012, Round 2.

5/2, Angus Dibley vs. Kingsgrove North HS, 23/2/2012, Round 1.

5/3, Christian Bennett vs. Sydney Boys HS, 14/10/2016, Round 2.

5/4, Charles Johnston vs. Alexandria Park CS, 1/3/2918, Round 2.

5/21, Angus Dibley vs. Lucas Heights CS, 1/9/2012, Round 3.

5/21, Daniel Fallins vs. Sydney Boys HS, 12/11/2012, Round 4.

Tons and Half-Tons of Runs:
123, Joshua Moors vs. Engadine HS, 29/11/2016, Sydney East Final.

113, Daniel Fallins vs. Knox Grammar, 17/11/2014, All Schools Semi Final.

101, Charles Johnston vs. Woolooware HS, 4/9/2019, Round 3.

97*, Angus Fallins vs. Sylvania HS, 3/11/2015, Round 3.

87, Kieran Weatherall vs. Alexandria Park, 1/3/2018, Round 2.

86, Corey Moors vs. Sylvania HS, 24/10/2018, Round 4.

80, Joshua Moors vs. Sylvania HS, 24/10/2018, Round 4.

75*, Jonathan Rose vs. Camden HS, 20/2/2013, Round 6.

71, Mitchell Johnson vs. Engadine HS, 29/11/2016, Sydney East Final.

69, Harrison Chapman vs. Lucas Heights CS, 25/10/2013, Round 1.

67, Lachlan Johnson vs. Sydney Tech HS, 11/4/2018, Round 3.

67, Charles Johnston vs. Sydney Boys HS, 11/11/2019, Sydney East Regional Final.

63*, Daniel Fallins vs. Engadine HS, 4/11/2013, Round 2.

61, James Hoy vs. Heathcote HS, 18/12/2013, Sydney East Regional Final.

61, Daniel Fallins vs. Lucas Heights CS, 25/10/2013, Round 1.

59, Dane Fisher vs. Kingsgrove North HS, 23/2/2012, Round 1.

57, Mitchell Johnson vs. Woolooware HS, 29/10/2014, Round 3.

56*, Jonathan Rose vs. Knox Grammar, 17/11/2014, All Schools Semi Final.

56*, Jonathan Rose vs. Sydney Boys HS, 12/11/2012, Round 4.

56, Mason Neale vs. Caringbah HS, 27/10/2016, Round 3.

55, Hunter Gregory vs. Menai HS, 1/12/2015, Sydney East Regional Final.

54*, Angus Dibley vs. Menai HS, 4/12/2013, Round 3.

53, Dane Fisher vs. Tempe HS, 16/3/2012, Round 2.

52*, Jonathan Rose vs. Menai HS, 4/12/2013, Round 3.

51, Jonathan Rose vs. Tempe HS, 16/3/2012, Round 2.

50, Dane Fisher vs. Hills Sports HS, 4/3/2013, Davidson Shield Final.

 

Appearances Record:
The Skippers:
29 – Lachlan Johnson

26 – Daniel Fallins

25 – Angus Dibley

25 – Jonathan Rose

25 – Callum Weatherall

24 – Kieran Weatherall

22 – Harrison Chapman

22 – Hunter Gregory

22 – Joshua Moors

21 – Angus Fallins

21 – Mitchell Johnson

Ben Williams 2012-2013

Harrison Chapman 2013-2014

Lachlan Hess 2014

Mitchell Johnson 2015-2017

Joshua Moors 2017-2019

Kieran Weatherall 2019-2020

Jamie Weaver 2021-present

Biggest wins:
KHS 8/323 defeated Alexandria Park CS 32 by 291 runs, 1/3/2018, Round 2.

KHS 7/287 defeated Engadine HS 83 by 204 runs, 29/11/2016, Sydney East Final.

KHS 9/204 defeated Kingsgrove North HS 26 by 178 runs, 23/2/2012, Round 1.

KHS 264 defeated Sydney Tech HS 100 by 164 runs, 11/4/2018, Round 3.

KHS 256 defeated Lucas Heights CS 92 by 164 runs, 25/10/2013, Round 1.

KHS 3/206 defeated Sylvania HS 45 by 161 runs, 3/11/2015, Round 3.

KHS 195 defeated Tempe HS 41 by 154 runs, 16/3/2012, Round 2.

KHS 7/217 defeated Sydney Tech HS 74 by 143 runs, 22/11/2017, Round 4.

KHS 1/81 defeated Bathurst HS 80 by 9 wickets, 23/3/2016, NSWCHS Semi-Final.

KHS 1/121 defeated Menai HS 119 by 9 wickets, 4/12/2013, Round 3.

KHS 2/51 defeated Picnic Point HS 50 by 8 wickets, 24/2/2016, Round 6.

KHS 2/115 defeated Engadine HS 112 by 8 wickets, 4/11/2013.

The Cap Numbers:

KHS BAGGY BLUE CAP NUMBERS

2012 onwards
1 Ben Williams * 21 Liam Parnell 41 Dylan Russo
2 Sean Bonser 22 Callum Weatherall 42 Matthew Staples
3 Mitchell Botskor 23 Christian Bennett 43 Samuel Mustow
4 Harrison Chapman * 24 Mitchell Johnson * 44 Luke Lawless
5 Stephen Curtis 25 Tyson Gilbert 45 Blake Hernandez
6 Angus Dibley 26 Mason Neale 46 Jamie Weaver *
7 Daniel Fallins 27 Jesse Newton 47 Tom Andrew
8 Dane Fisher 28 Eamon Roffe 48 Lachlan Gatherer
9 Benn Hallman 29 Tom Zuber 49 Ethan Ball
10 Jonathan Rose 30 Joshua Moors * 50 Phillip Bova
11 Brendan Royall 31 Lachlan Johnson 51 Josiah Brennan
12 Nicholas Swanson 32 Kieran Weatherall * 52 Jack Christodoulou
13 Matthew Zuber 33 Cooper Devine 53 Max Havet
14 Abhijeet Mangipudi 34 Jackson Devine 54 Connor Mead
15 Hunter Gregory 35 Nicholas Bush 55 Lachlan Milmlow
16 Lachlan Hess * 36 Charles Johnston 56 Byron Whitbread
17 James Hoy 37 Hayden Neale * denotes captain
18 Joshua Campbell 38 Jonah Hopping
19 Angus Fallins 39 Corey Moors
20 Justin Hess 40 Richard Nolan

 

 

Mark Mitchell

Relieving Deputy Principal

Boys Cricket Coach | Boys Football Coach