Cricket: Trip sees first boys' team to play offshore

The Havelock North High School 1st X1 cricket team became the school's first boys' team to play offshore when they travelled to Brisbane for a week-long tour last month.

Coach Peter Hensman, who took the boys from January 18-26, also took a girls' team in 2008 to Brisbane.

They were hosted by Anglican Church Grammar School (Churchie) where coach Hensman's brother, Jonathan, is headmaster of the 1800 roll boys' school. Churchie is part of the GPS (Great Public School) group of private schools in Queensland.

In their first game (50 overs), HNHS Cricket put Brisbane Boys College 2nd X1 in to bat before skittling them for 132 in 36 overs.

Josh Hannan took 3-17 off six overs while Rishabh Sharma claimed 2-20 off five.

"We passed their total in the 24th over for the loss of just Dan Fridd's wicket for nine runs," Hensman said as Harrison Gregory (61no) and Josh Hannan (50no) forged an unbroken partnership of 114.

The villagers then took part in a 2-hour coaching clinic, thanks to Anglican Church Grammar School, from former West Indies and Queensland State player Brendon Nash.

"The boys lapped it up and were really treated to a great session. After lunch that day we played a friendly T20."

In their next game, HNHS amassed 212-7 in 50 overs against Brisbane Grammar School 2nd X1 with Gregory scoring 80 runs while Carl Shackleton scored 56 and Callum Bensemann added 28.

"It was a hot day so batting was not easy," Hensman said.

In reply, the hosts started well without losing a wicket until the 17th over on 71 before eclipsing HNHS total with nine balls remaining for the loss of five wickets. Tom Grant took 2-17 off six was the pick of HNHS bowlers.

"I'm sure most of the boys would have enjoyed this game the most due mainly to the oval, the experience of playing in the heat and the closeness of the game," the coach said.

Rain reduced their last match against Churchie 2nd X1 to a 40-over affair.

Churchie were dismissed for 113 in 37 overs with Ben Broughton taking 3-15 off eight overs, Carl Shackleton 2-18 off seven and Logan Schollum 2-8 off two.

"I made a decision to give a bat to boys who hadn't batted in the first two games and it nearly cost us the game," Hensman said, adding the drizzle made it hard to score runs with pressure mounting on the top order coming in late only to lose their wickets cheaply.

No 3 Vayun Rangnekar made a steady 33 while only Logan Schollum (16 runs) and Josh Hannan (12) made double figures although Thomas Hensman showed a cool head to hold an end to take HNHS to victory with singles as others crumbled around him.

"We won by one wicket in the 32nd over," he said, happy to come away with two wins from three matches.

"Overall, from a cricketing perspective, it was brilliant because the boys lapped up their opportunities and thoroughly enjoyed the amazing ovals, facilities and the matches."

The pupils relished the R and R segment of the trip, trying to match the 2008 girls' team effort in the shopping malls.

They crammed in a sightseeing tour of Brisbane, a day trip to Mooloolaba beach on the Sunshine Coast and the final day at Dreamworld/Water World.

Hensman said his team did themselves, their families and the school proud with their impeccable manners during the inaugural tour.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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