Birregurra to return in standalone clash

Birregurra cricket captain Rueben Dare, middle, will unleash recruits Sam Lowe, left, and Toby Sudweeks when the Saints and Apollo Bay kick off the Colac district season in a stand-alone match on Saturday. The clash, which coincides with the Birregurra Festival and Art Show, ends the Saints’ 30-year absence from Division One.

Birregurra cricket captain Rueben Dare, middle, will unleash recruits Sam Lowe, left, and Toby Sudweeks when the Saints and Apollo Bay kick off the Colac district season in a stand-alone match on Saturday. The clash, which coincides with the Birregurra Festival and Art Show, ends the Saints’ 30-year absence from Division One.

BIRREGURRA will burst back from a three decade absence from top-grade cricket in a stand-alone match against Apollo Bay on Saturday to kick off the Colac district season.

CDCA officials allowed the Saints to shift their round one match against the Sharks at Apollo Bay on October 17 to Birregurra a week earlier to attract a healthy crowd because of the town’s annual festival this weekend.

Birregurra captain Rueben Dare said the club was excited about its return to Division One cricket, with the Saints working hard in the off-season to build a list capable of competing in the association’s highest grade.

The Saints recruited Deans Marsh duo James Rowan and Roy Armistead, and also picked up Geelong Cricket Association pair Sam Lowe, East Belmont, and Toby Sudweeks, Newtown and Chilwell, to bolster their list, which reached Division Two finals last year.

“We’re just looking forward to it,” Dare said.

“I hope there’s a few from the league that come down and have a look and see what the Birregurra Cricket Club’s all about.

“We’re just going to go in and have a crack and see what happens,” he said.

“There’s a good feeling around the group, we’re getting plenty of numbers to training and the new boys are starting to ease into the group.

“It’s nice to have some younger blokes around the club, and they bring plenty of energy which is good.”

Dare is the older brother of Stoneyford premiership players Levi, Joe, Lincoln and Dom.

He said the Saints were confident of attracting a strong crowd to the game because of Saturday and Sunday’s Birregurra Festival.

“We’ve done it a couple of times before and it’s always been a great day,” Dare said.

“We did it two years ago against Colac and ended up getting a pretty good crowd, we find we get plenty of dads who wander off and come down and watch a couple of overs.

“And the Bay boys are always good fun; they hang around after the game, so it’ll be good for the club as well.”

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