Dads, sons line up for the decider
HARWOOD captain Tim McMahon and Westlawn legend Tony Blanch will be proud dads this weekend in the Premier League decider.
Both their sons will be alongside them in battle.
But spare a thought for former Westlawn batsman Ken Wilson who will be watching nervously from the other side of the fence.
Ken, a veteran of more than 400 first grade games for Westlawn, will be hoping his son Simon can win his first grand final in the top grade.
In only his fifth year in the Premier League, 22-year-old Wilson will not only have the pressure of opening the batting but will be required to don the keeping gloves as well.
“Simon’s only been keeping in recent years and now he’s also opening the batting,” Simon’s father Ken says.
“As far as handling pressure, things don’t get to Simon too much...well you certainly don’t notice it.
“Opening the batting is probably a new role but it’s a good move. It’s a good place to bat and I don’t think he’ll have a problem with it.
“I’m sure he’ll handle going from keeping to batting. He’s pretty fit and capable of doing both.”
Ken, who won eight first grade titles with Westlawn, says he can see similarities with his style of batting and Simons’, although he was reluctant to expand on the subject.
“I suppose Simon’s pretty similar to me in the cover-drive area,” he says.
“I better not say too much as the Harwood players might read this article.
“Simon’s wicket-keeping has now come on and he plays a very important role in the team.”
For Westlawn, winning this season’s grand final would cap off a wonderful year considering they just scraped into the semi-finals.
The young wicket-keeper/batsman experienced his first taste of defeat in a first grade grand final against Brothers last year.
So when it comes to winning big matches Ken has some advice for his talented son.
“He’s now experienced his first loss in a grand final last season and like everyone else we don’t like it,” Ken says.
“We just have to perform better next time. Going into a grand final you need to be confident, you need to be wary, respect the opposition and fight all the way.
“Every ball counts particularly if you open the batting. Hopefully the weekend will be dry. If you get sent out to bat on a wet wicket you have to fight every ball.”