KILLARNEY’S bid to roll perennial powerhouse Panmure in this weekend’s Grassmere Cricket Association (GCA) grand final is more than just a pipedream for Brett Sanderson.
Nanjing Night Net

The middle-order batsman likens his debut season with the Crabs to a fairytale and is determined to help write the happy ending.

Sanderson moved to Port Fairy a year ago and was “talked into” joining Killarney Cricket Club by work colleague James Cole — the brother of captain Liam.

“I put it off for a while but then I thought it would be a good way to meet some new people,” Sanderson told The Standard yesterday.

After an introduction to the association’s B grade competition, where he made 27 against Yambuk, the father-of-three was promoted to the top division.

Sanderson was part of Killarney’s one-run Twenty20 final win against Panmure in December, making 43, and last weekend’s semi-final victory against Hawkesdale, producing 42 not out.

The 38-year-old, who works as a plumbing showroom salesman in Warrnambool, said the Crabs’ months of hard work would go down the drain if they lost the decider.

“We’re just a bunch of mates having a game of cricket and we want to succeed,” he said.

“(But) I’m a harsh critic of myself and the group.

“We’ve been on top of the ladder for most of the season.

“If we don’t perform like we know we can, then our performance all season, and last weekend, will be wasted.

“I’ve been there before. I’ve won and lost grand finals. I know what it feels like to be on both sides.”

Killarney and Panmure have played some thrillers this season, including a tie in round six and the close Twenty20 final.

Their round 13 match last month was dominated by the Bulldogs.

“They’ve got a pretty good bowling attack and some quality batsmen,” Sanderson said. “I’d like to see us play the way we did against Hawkesdale. We fought it out in the field, kept things tight, batted how we knew we could bat, kept wickets in hand, built partnerships and chased down a sizable finals total.

“It could go either way.”

Sanderson was a late convert to cricket, first joining a club when he was 19.

The loyal leader stayed at metropolitan side Eastfield for 19 years and captained the second XI to back-to-back premierships.

He hopes to share the same success with his new club.

“It would be a fairytale for me, winning two flags in my first season,” he said.

“But it would mean a lot for some of the guys at the club, (including) Fred and Brendan Chatfield.”

Averaging 32 runs, Sanderson is ready for the task at hand.

“My form has been pretty good. I’ve been batting down the order as more of an impact player,” he said.

“I’ve done my job and hopefully I can continue that form this weekend.”

The grand final will be played at Purnim on Saturday and Sunday.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.