Of 549 cricketers who have represented the Bay of Plenty over the last 87 years, Rupert Peter Owens Drysdale is just the third representative player to play 100 games for his province.
The milestone was reached when his team faced off against Waikato Valley at Owen Delany Park in Taupō against on Monday at the annual Northern Districts (ND) T20 tournament - 10 years since his Bay of Plenty debut in the same town.
To put his achievement in perspective, Drysdale is player number 498 of 549 who have worn the blue and gold provincial cricket colours since Bay of Plenty made their New Zealand Cricket minor association debut against South Auckland at Seddon Park in Hamilton in 1932.
In his 100 games he has produced statistics of 3215 runs, three centuries with a highest score of 119 along with 24 wickets.
Drysdale made his Bay of Plenty debut at the ND One-Day tournament in Taupō against Hamilton on November 25, 2009. That tournament team was captained by former Black Cap Llorne Howell with Jono Boult, Bharat Popli, Ben Williams, Richard Rice, Steven Rae, Brett Hampton, Daniel Hill, Te Ahu Davis, Tony Goodin, Andrew Gibbs and Drysdale in the playing 12 - Hampton and Davis also making their Bay debut.
No player has played more games with Drysdale than current Mount Maunganui premier captain and teammate Dale Swan, who played with him in the Bay team in the 2009/10 season.
"When Pete first joined the Bay side his drive and sheer determination was apparent, it showed in the brand of cricket he played early on in his career," Swan says.
"A start with the bat was never good enough, he could always do more. No one trains harder or with more focus. Pete has grown as a cricketer to become firstly the most successful Bay of Plenty captain and secondly one of the most revered all round cricketers in the Bay of Plenty region. Born to lead and genuine passion, Pete deserves every ounce of success that comes his way and massive congratulations on 100 games and no doubt plenty more to come."
Included in Drysdale's century of appearances are a record 13 Hawke Cup matches, in which he became the most successful Bay of Plenty Hawke Cup captain, winning the time-honoured NZ Cricket prize on two occasions and defending a further seven times. The Bay Hawke Cup skipper blasted 524 Hawke Cup runs and set a second wicket partnership record of 197, with Alex Lees against Counties Manukau in 2017.
Tim Clarke, who played 77 games in the blue and gold strip between 2010 and 2018, played every one of his Bay games with Drysdale, first playing together at Tauranga Intermediate School.
"Pete always had a work ethic second to none and his drive to succeed is unimaginable. From a struggling side in 2010 to arguably the most successful Bay team a few seasons later, must be credited to Pete's contribution and his leadership.
"Pete transformed our training ethic for the purpose of what we wanted to achieve. He didn't do it through talking but through his actions as captain, which created a close bond through the five or so season that he had the captain's role."
One of the newer members of the Bay of Plenty representative side is Stephen Crossan, who received his 25 Bay game baggie, against Northland in November.
"Since my first Bay training, it was clear how driven Pete is to succeed. Every training has a purpose and Pete will continue to train until he feels that purpose has been achieved or his teammates' arms fall off."
RPO Drysdale – BOPCA:
Player Number 498 (100 Games Record).
Debut v Hamilton 15 November 2009 (ND One-Day Tournament).
100 Games v Waikato Valley 16 December 2019 (ND T20 Tournament).
Games 100 Runs 3215 Centuries 3 HS 119 Wickets 24 BB 3/8.
Bay of Plenty Cricket Representative Records:
Derek Beard (1980/81 - 1997/98): 105 games, 2843 runs, three centuries, 204 wickets.
Michael Wright (1967/68 - 1991/92): 103 games, 3950 runs, four centuries.
Peter Drysdale (2009/10 - 2019): 100 games, 3215 runs, three centuries, 24 wickets.