Cricket Nationals (Gillette Cup) Preview
The National First XI cricket tournament starts at the national high performance centre in Lincoln University in Christchurch next Thursday. Six teams play each other over the course of five days in 50 over contests with the team at the top of table declared the winner.
The six team’s in this year’s edition are:
Westlake Boys’ High School (Auckland)
Hamilton Boys’ High School (Northern Districts)
New Plymouth Boys’ High School (Central Districts)
Wellington College (Wellington)
Christchurch Boys’ High School (Canterbury)
Otago Boys’ High School (Otago)
Last year’s runners up Hamilton return alongside Wellington College and Otago Boys.’ Westlake are back for the first time since 2015 while Christchurch Boys’ replace defending champions St Andrew’s College as the Canterbury representative. New Plymouth Boys’ High School won the National junior title in 2017 and harbor high hopes of changing the established order.
Players to Watch
Angus Sidey (Christchurch Boys’ High School) – Sidey has been in the CBHS side since 2018 and is attending his second nationals. Angus has been a consistent performer in 2020 taking 11 wickets in seven games and scoring 142 runs in seven innings at an average of 35. Sidey will take part in the National Under 19’s tournament just days after the conclusion of the Nationals.
Jason McGrath (New Plymouth Boys’ High School) – Jason will be hoping for the same success he had at the Junior Nationals in 2017 when he finished the top wicket taker and ripped through St Bede’s on the final day to seal the title taking figures of 6-22 in eight overs.
Jacob Parker (Hamilton Boys’ High School) – Jacob was so close to lifting the trophy for Hamilton Boys’ on the final day last year however they were beaten by St Andrew’s College who claimed the title by having a superior net run rate. Parker himself had a great tournament scoring 245 runs, including an unforgettable century against Otago Boys,’ and taking seven wickets in five matches.
Jacob Cumming (Otago Boys’ High School) – Cumming was the joint MVP at last year’s tournament and recently attended a New Zealand Under 19’s training camp. He scored 211 runs in five games, including a century against Rosmini College.
Jakob Vandenberg (Wellington College) – Jakob has been in outstanding form for Wellington College in the Premier Youth Grade. More known for his bowling in term one, Jakob finished the term four competition as the top run scorer with 239 runs in four innings. He also took eight wickets with best figures of 4-18 against Scots College.
Bevon John-Jacobs (Westlake Boys’ High School) – Bevon has been Westlake’s’ best performer this season, finishing top run scorer for them in both the One Day and T20 competitions. In the One Day tournament he notched up 325 runs in six innings at an average of 81, including 117 off 84 balls against Takapuna Grammar.
Previous National Champions
2019: St Andrew’s College
2018 Wellington College
2017 Christchurch Boys High School
2016 Christchurch Boys High School
2015 Hutt International Boys School
2014 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2013 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2012 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2011 King’s College
2010 King’s College
2009 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2008 Hamilton Boys High School
2007 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2006 King’s College
2006 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2005 Christchurch Boys’ High School
2005 Tauranga Boys’ High
2004 Palmerston North Boys High School
2004 King’s College
2003 Hamilton Boys High School
2002 Hamilton Boys High School
2001 Wellington College
2000 Auckland Grammar
1999 Christchurch Boys’ High School
1999 King’s College
1998 Palmerston North Boys High School
1997 Wanganui Collegiate
1996 St Patricks College (Silverstream)
1995 Wanganui Collegiate
1994 Whangarei Boys High School
1993 Otago Boys High School
1992 Otago Boys High School
1991 St Kentigern College
1990 Palmerston North Boys High School
-Story Courtesy of College Sport Media