The Western Suburbs Cricket Club was founded in 1947. Legacy forms the foundation of a successful club in to the future.
Our Club History
1947-48 to 1957-58: The Formative Years
1947-1948: Western Suburbs Cricket Club is Born
Following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbour in December 1941, local cricket competitions in the Maitland area were indefinitely suspended as the threat of World War II loomed ever closer to Australia. The local competitions would remain in recess until the end of the war years – not returning until the summer of 1947-48. However, with the Newcastle competition still running, Maitland would enter a combined team in the Newcastle competition for the remainder of the war years.
But with the end of World War II came the revival of local cricket in the Maitland area in 1947-48. As a part of that revival came the opportunity to breath new life into the format of the competition – with a big part of that revival being the formation of new clubs … in particular the Western Suburbs Cricket Club.
Legend has it that 5 influential members of the local community: Robert “Bob” Brown, Eddie Hill, Pearce Ryan, Russell Dimmock and Robert “Bob” Conlin gathered under a street light in South Street, Telarah to discuss the formation of this new club. This famous “meeting under the lightpost” would become the first ever WSCC committee meeting – and a re-enactment of this famous meeting was put together for the WSCC 1st Grade Documentary, screened at the Old Boys Day Re-Union in 2014.
Western Suburbs Cricket Club, which effectively had to start from scratch in 1947, was made up entirely of players living in the local West Maitland area – as the association enforced “district cricket” upon the startup of the new competitions in 1947-48. It meant that all players representing your club had to reside within the boundaries of your district.
Initially Western Suburbs used a ground known as “West Maitland Park”, which was located along Second Avenue in Rutherford, and the Marist Brothers ground (now known as the “Black Hill” ground in Maitland Park) to play their home fixtures.
1950 -1951 Season
With player numbers in the district dropping for season 1950-51, the Branxton and Raymond Terrace clubs do not enter a team in the premier grade. Due to the absence of a Branxton team, special permission was granted from the association board for Branxton players to play outside of their local district and represent Western Suburbs. The injection of these players to the club meant that Western Suburbs could not only put out the full compliment of players in each grade – but for the first time in their short existence … they would be a genuine premiership contender.
The addition of Charles Bridge, Terry Farrell and twins Don and John Thrift to the top grade team almost immediately helped change the fortunes of the team. Lead by captain Eddie Hill, 1st Grade would finish 2nd of the 5 teams in the top grade and qualify for the final – where they would take on the powerhouse outfit from Central.
In the final against Central, rookie quick bowler Col Thompson would write his name into Western Suburbs folklore as he ripped through the competition favourites to take 6-25 in the 1st Innings and help set up the famous win. After making Central follow-on, Western Suburbs survived a tricky run chase late on day 2 to reach their target at take home the title!
WSCC 10-159 (Bruce Whipp 45, Charles Bridge 35)
Central 10-52 (Col Thompson 6-25, William Hughes 3-9)
Central (following-on) 10-188 (John Wright 3-46, William Hughes 2-16)
WSCC 6-86 (Charles Bridge 53*, Bruce Whipp 16)
WSCC won outright by 4 wickets.
#42 – Charles Bridge
#43 – Terry Farrell
#44 – Don Thrift
#45 – John Thrift
#46 – Col Thompson
#42 – Charles Bridge
Batting Aggregate – Charles Bridge (445 runs)
Batting Average – Charles Bridge (44.50 runs)
Bowling Aggregate – Terry Farrell (21 wickets)
Bowling Average – Charles Bridge (9.07 runs)