Getting to know… John Ross

As the season begins to draw to a close, we keep rolling out the Spotty Profiles for your enjoyment. This week we are privileged to have none other than the Chairman of Selectors for 2018/19, John Ross. When it comes time to make tough decisions, John is the man many would want. Possessing superior cricketing smarts and a level head (some may argue otherwise!)

A stalwart of Spotswood, John has been a vital part at Spotty – both on the field as a fierce and often intimidating opening bowler, but also off the field with many hours of volunteering and coaching that many are grateful for.

To emphasise John’s status at Spotswood a Testimonial Game was held in his honour during the 2013/14 Season against Werribee Centrals. This game saw a number of Spotswood Legends return to the 3rd XI to hammer Werribee Centrals in honour of John’s contributions throughout his time at Spotswood.


Nickname(s):       J.R., Rossy, Taj.

Favourite Thing about Spotty?      The people. Never amazes me the amount of thankless hours (Committee and other helpers) that go into running a club like Spotty.

What are you looking forward to the most next season?      To see the continued improvement of the juniors now playing senior cricket. As well seeing more new juniors playing this great game.

Why did you choose your particular role at the Club?     I wanted to give something back to the club, while still remaining around the place. A wise man always told me “the game owes you nothing, you owe the game”

If you could have dinner with any 3 guests (dead or alive) who would they be?      Shane Warne and Tiger Woods (imagine the stories between these 2), and Mike Tyson.

Best Coach? And Why?      Graeme Dean. When he came to Spotty, he extended my years of playing, by convincing me to reduce my run up. Convincing me to do that was no mean feat.

Greatest Cricketing Moment You’ve Witnessed?     It has to be Steve Waugh’s last Boxing day test match innings. I was there with my 12 year old nephew. Steve took a bad blow to his elbow, but continued to bat on, but obviously in extreme pain. About 5 overs later, he retired hurt, at which time my nephew looked at me disappointingly and said “will he come back, or is he done”? I replied, “It’s Steve Waugh buddy, of course he will be back”. Following another 2 wickets falling (about 2 hours), out he strode to a standing applause. #WARRIORANDLEGEND

Your Most Treasured Sporting Moment? (In which you’ve been involved).     Definitely my one and only first eleven premiership in 05/06. Previously, I had played in about 5 losing semi finals, as well as 6 losing grand finals. The feeling of winning that GF was fantastic, especially for the joy it brought to Jack Lauder (RIP), Roy and all of the other members and helpers around the club.

Pink Stumps Day a sold-out success!

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MC Tony Schibeci with our special guest for the day, Clare Cannon

Pink Stumps Day returned to Spotswood CC in style, with our sold-out lunch featuring colour, inspiration and fun on the way to blasting away our fundraising target for the McGrath Foundation, with our eventual donation to them a whopping $3,295!

Up to 120 guests piled in on the day and were welcomed by an archway of bright pink balloons and very different looking clubrooms than our usual summer Saturdays. Across the afternoon, they enjoyed lunch, desserts, and a fascinating interview with our guest speaker Clare Cannon in conversation with MC and club member Tony Schibeci.



Auctioneer Peter Young hard at work

The charity auction and raffle then got to the heart of the reason for coming together, and together raised a phenomenal amount of money – way beyond even our most ambitious hopes. The fabulous “fight like a girl” painting by Mel Ramsbottom, a pink wicketkeeping glove worn and signed by Adam Gilchrist, a 5-star resort holiday to Thailand and many wonderful prints of iconic images were among the items keeping our auctioneer (none other than President, Peter Young) busy. The raffle, featuring donated prizes from a huge number of generous local businesses and individuals, including Spotswood Cricket Club players, was a great hit with the crowd too. We’d like to extend a huge thankyou to them all our prize donors – see our list below.


Rumour has it they had to send out for more Prosecco as the event wore on… And once the music started, it was on for old and young, with the afternoon turning into an impromptu karaoke session and our singer Kat getting most of the room up on their feet or at least tapping their toes.


Our super popular muso Kat was joined by many guest singers as the afternoon wore on!

An event this successful doesn’t just happen by magic – there are a lot of people to thank. 

Huge thanks to Melissa Ramsbottom, not only for donating a painting and hand-made framed inspirational quotes for the auctions, but also for taking photos throughout the day to capture the event, as she so often has this year.

Social member Margret Dawson once again approached local businesses seeking their support with raffle prize donations, and her persistence and commitment to the task was invaluable  not to mention her fabulous potato salad which received rave reviews from the guests.

Special mention to Deb Barnes and Arianne Spratt for their scrumptious brownies and pink meringues which adorned the lovely dessert towers.

We couldn’t have done it all without co-organiser Sarah Grouios, whose wonderful styling and decorating of the room, and running of the raffle on the day made such a difference.

Final thanks must go to our Vice President, Simon Barnes, who drove the whole event, including making the commitment to McGrath Foundation, setting up and coordinating ticket bookings, bringing the right people into the mix, making sure everyone was fed and “watered”, and much much more.

Til next year then! In the meantime, check out our photo gallery below. If anyone else took photos on the day they are willing for us to share here and on Facebook, please send them to us.

Many thanks to all our generous raffle prize donors below!

Businesses / groups:

Little Bulla Salon, Spotswood
Newport Cellars, Newport
Two Birds Brewery, Spotswood
Terry White Pharmacy Spotswood
Sandra Christakakis, from Pink Butterflies
Priceline Pharmacy, Williamstown
Spottiswoode Hotel, Spotswood
Dukkah Restaurant, South Kingsville
Victoria Hotel, Yarraville
Doyle & Sons Café, Spotswood
Motorino Restaurant, South Kingsville
Mabel & Woods Boutique, Spotswood
Love It, Williamstown
Lux Living, Spotswood
Bunch of Cakes, Spotswood
Candied Bakery, Spotswood
Chase’ Kitchen, Spotswood
Hudsons Road Wine Bar, Spotswood
Rockafella Barbers, Spotswood
Spotswood Kingsville RSL
Angel Nails, Spotswood
Al Nada Bakery, Spotswood
Just Sausage Rolls @ Spotswood RSL


Sharon Schwarz
Karen Minnett
Ian Rickman
Gordon Mutch
Players from Spotswood CC 1st XI and 2nd XI teams

Photos from the day – with thanks to Melissa Ramsbottom

A very successful President’s Lunch

Barry Michael and auctioneer

World Champion Boxer Barry Michael, with our auctioneer Adrian Butera, from Compton Green

On Friday the 1st of February we hosted the 2019 Presidents Lunch. Judging by the comments of many guests (even after the event, on Saturday) everyone enjoyed the event and that made it a really great day. It was also an opportunity to showcase our Club and of course thank our many sponsors – without their support it would be difficult to fund our cricket program.

Matthew Campbell hosted as our MC and we gained some valuable insight on the world of AFL Coaches from Mark Brayshaw and an insight into Australian Boxing from Barry Michael. Des Dowling our comedian had the room laughing and the day was rounded off by Julie Haig with some after function music.

Des Dowling

Comedian Des Dowling had the room in stitches

The catering was the highlight of the day with the Club using Ben Luckman catering for the first time and I had many guests comment on the quality of the food.

As part of my Presidents speech I spoke about the need to diversify our Club and the need to ensure we have a strong junior program if we are to be around in another 100 years. A copy of my speech is available for you below to read in full.

Of course these events don’t just happen, and I would like to thank John Wheeler for his endless work, Rosemary Wray for helping set up, Anne Marie Butterworth for her tireless work and the senior players who provided the bar/ table service, led by Declan O’ Brien.

Mark Brayshaw, CEO of the AFL Coaches Association, with our MC Matt Campbell

Mark Brayshaw, CEO of the AFL Coaches Association, with our MC Matt Campbell

And I would like to thank Melissa my partner for her support on the room design, posters/ tickets design and as our official photographer on the day.

Yours in cricket
Peter Young


President’s Address, by Peter Young

Good afternoon and thanks Matt for the introduction.

Welcome to the 2019 Spotswood Cricket Club Presidents Lunch.

We’ve got an exciting line up for you today and it’s great to see so many regular attendees and of course some new faces into our club.  Welcome to all.

I would like to take this opportunity to recognise our Club Life Members, our Club Patron (Roy Picone), Coterie Members, players and past players, friends and guests.

This event is not possible without the generous support of our Club Sponsors and I would like to recognise our function sponsor Canadian Solar who is represented here today by Hayden Fletcher, a past President and player of our Club.

I would also like to welcome our long term sponsors who are also here today, Compton and Green Real Estate represented today by Managing Director Adrian Butera and his team, Burson Auto Parts, Midas and Autobarn represented here today by Darren Hodgson from Midas Yarraville and Bill Roccella from Autobarn Altona.

I do thank our sponsors, and it is a genuine and sincere thank you, because without your support our ability to fund a sustainable cricket program would not possible.

On field, our senior teams are all vying for contention in this year’s finals series, with our T20 team in the semi-final stage of the VTCA T20 Competition.

But our future truly lies in our Junior Program and we see our greatest opportunity to develop our future junior players through programs such as the cricket academy that we are aiming to set up for the 2019/20 season.

I am also pleased to announce that we are embracing our community and have engaged with Cricket Victoria to offer a social sixes program for women and girls which is aimed at offering a pathway to our sport while also offering a fitness program as well.  We also held our first Westgate Shield competition involving boys and girls teams from local primary schools.

We can also no longer rely on our traditional base of male only players and we therefore must diversify if we are to be around in another 100 years’ time.

As an example we have partnered with the EqualPlay program, which is supported by Hobsons Bay City Council. EqualPlay encourages traditional male dominated sports to open their clubs up for all to join (in particular females).

We see the success of these programs as helping to secure the long term viability of our great club.

I’d like to make a special presentation to a long-serving member of our Club.  Joining our committee for the first time as President this year I was surprised to learn that we had a member of our committee that had served the club in a variety of roles (including club captain) for over 50 years!

It’s important to recognise our history and the people who have helped make our club great.  I would like to present our club patron, Roy Picone with a 2018/19 club shirt as recognition for his devotion to our club.

Once again, welcome to the Spotswood Cricket Club and I hope you enjoy your day.

Getting to know…John Wheeler

This week we profile club stalwart John Wheeler, somebody that has poured blood, sweat and tears into the Club and has been influential in developing the Spotswood Cricket Club that we know and love.

John has been involved at the club in many facets as Player, Coach and President to name a few. John’s dedication to his role at the club over the years has been remarkable and continues to this day.

From his days as a player, to taking the Presidency and  becoming coach of the junior sides at Spotty. John has done it all and continues to remain actively involved in the club!

Read on to found out more on John and his involvement at Spotswood CC!

John Wheeler Profile

Nickname(s): Wheels

What do you see your role at the Club to be? Cricket operations, cleaner, covers man whatever needs to be done really

What are you looking forward to the most this season? Having a full senior side and playing our best cricket. It all flows on from there

Greatest Cricketing Moment You’ve Witnessed?  Winning 1987-88 1st X1 Grand Final cricket final

Favourite Cricketer to Watch? Warnneyyyyy

Best Teammate you’ve played with? And Why?  Peter Daffey, good to have on our side. Fast Bowler who was nuts but a great player, probably the most intimidating player I have played with. He was feared by many with his left arm quicks

Your Most Treasured Sporting Moment?    2007 at MCG when Cats won first premiership for 44 years. Being at the game with son Travis, nephew Luke Salmond and Brother in law Fred after many pain staking years as a losing GF’s

Win the toss and? Always bat

Favourite Thing about Spotty? The people, always about the people

We’re pinking up our game!

Join us at our Pink Stumps Day Lunch on Saturday 16 February 12–3pm for food, fun and inspiration, and help raise funds to support those affected by breast cancer.

Clare Cannon, our guest speaker

Clare Cannon, our guest speaker

For just $25 a ticket, you get lunch, entertainment, our First XI team in action against St Albans CC, and the opportunity to hear from our inspiring guest speaker Clare Cannon. Clare is a member of the committee of the Melbourne Cricket Club, manages Woomagarma Station, was Founder of Cricket Without Borders, and previously had roles with Melbourne Community Foundation, Earthwatch Institute and St Catherine’s School, among others. Come and find out more about her many endeavours, and her passion for making a difference.

Get your tickets now! Places are limited, and already selling well, so don’t miss out. Get a group of friends together and book yourselves in.

We’re aiming to raise $2000 for the McGrath Foundation, with a big raffle and charity auction running during the lunch. There’ll also be door prizes, and the drinks available to buy from the bar.

If you can’t make it on the day but would still like to help our fundraising efforts, you can always donate online now to our fundraising campaign. Help us make a difference!

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Getting to know… Simon Barnes

This week we profile the right hand man of the Spotswood Cricket Club, Vice President, Simon Barnes. Simon played in the infamous “Veterans” side for numerous years and this year (with his playing days over) has stepped up to take on the role of Vice President. Simon’s role is one many people tend to shy away from yet we are so privileged to have someone of Simon’s calibre step up! The connection and mateship between Simon and President, Peter Young, is something to be envied and will keep the Club in a great position for years to come!

Read on as we find out more about Simon including his views on his role, who he would invite to dinner, his most treasured sporting moment and MORE!

Nickname(s)?  Cider, Barney, Barnesy…..

What do you see your role at the Club to be?  Helping to keep the off-field stuff humming along and improving.  If we can get all the off-field stuff right, then the on-field stuff more or less takes care of itself

Why did you choose your role at the Club?  It actually chose me! And I’m more than happy to do what I can to help us achieve our goals for the season – on or off field.

Your Most Treasured Sporting Moment? (In which you’ve been involved).  Every time I played cricket in the same team as my sons Tom and Charlie.  Winning the flag with both of them last season was a bonus!

Win the toss and?  Bowl (it’s not a batsmen’s game like they’d have you believe).

If you could have dinner with any 3 guests (dead or alive) who would they be?   Michael Palin, Johnny Cash and Bon Scott

AFL Club Supported?  Go the Bloods!!

Favourite Cricketer to Watch?  So many to choose from, but I can’t go past Shane Warne as a leg-spinning genius – a true master of his craft.



Sat 22 December – a day not to be missed!

Are you ready for Super Saturday, Spotty style? On Saturday 22 December, our last day of senior matches for the year, we’re making a day out of it. We invite you all to down to watch our First and Third XIs and catch up before Christmas takes us our separate ways, or come and join us in the evening if you’re playing away. What’s on?

  • Past players day from 1pm – we’re setting up a marquee between the grounds so you can keep an eye on both matches, with refreshments available from Roy’s Palace (otherwise known as Picone Pavilion), while you have a good catch up with past teammates as the silly season draws to a close.
  • Sponsors and Coterie thank you 1-3pm – keep any eye out for your invite if this is you! Join us in the clubrooms for some drinks and a bite to eat – it’s our way of saying thank you for all the extraordinary support you give our club.
  • Christmas break up and raffle draw from 6pm – head into the clubrooms at the close of play. Santa will be there, and if you have a pressie for the kids make sure you get it to us early. And of course meals will be available, and the big raffle draw will take place before we say goodbye to each other for a couple of weeks.

Christmas raffle

What’s the deal with the raffle? $2 a ticket, three big prizes – hampers with toys, gifts, food and vouchers – see details below. Best of all, the proceeds go back into the club’s junior programs.

Get your tickets from the clubrooms the next two Thursdays, Saturdays, or whenever we’re open – or message us through Facebook and we can sort something out for you.

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Main pic: by on Unsplash

Getting to know… Leonard Robbins Jr

In this week’s profile we delve deeper  into the man who puts an enormity of work into Spotswood’s Junior Cricketing Program, Leonard Robbins Jnr. Lenny is the son of  Spotty legend and current practice wicket curator, Leonard Robbins Snr.

Lenny Jnr has again taken on the role of Junior Administrator and Head of Junior Cricket Operations. A role that requires a mountain of commitment and patience, two traits that Lenny has in abundance. Lenny puts in countless hours into ensuring that the Junior Program stays up and running and is taking initiative to better the Junior Program for future years.

A successful Junior Program is the base of the Spotswood Cricket Club pyramid, without a solid base the rest of the pyramid wobbles. That’s why the work and time Lenny Jnr gives cannot be understated and is truly appreciated by the entire club!!

Nickname(s): Lenny, Rocket (arm)

What do you see your role at the Club to be?  Spotswood is small local area with a new generation of families moving into the suburb.  My role is to bring through the next generation of players (and hopefully encourage some of the parents to play as well).

Why did you choose your particular role at the Club?  I’ve had some involvement with the junior section since I was 19 (coaching).  We need more locals involved and thinking ‘this is their club’.  I believe we can do this through running a successful junior program.

If you could have dinner with any 3 guests (dead or alive) who would they be Nelson Mandela, John Monash and John Curtin.  Three very impressive and articulate people.

Best Coach? And Why?  Michael McCarthy. Supported my combined role as player and junior coach.

Best Teammate you’ve played with? And Why?  Very hard question since I’ve played with quite a few guys over the years. Jeff Peel and Chris Beckett were the most fun.

Win the toss and?   Bat, of course

Favourite Cricketer to Watch?  Mark Waugh when on song.

AFL Club supported?   North. But prefer hockey.

T20 showdown this Tuesday

Our final T20 round robin clash with Deer Park tomorrow is do or die – we’re both on two wins for our group, and only one of us can go through to finals. As if that isn’t enough entertainment for you, we’ve got all sorts happening to make it an even more exciting night!

Joining us for the night from Essendon CC, we warmly welcome English cricketer Oliver Soames as our guest player. Oli has recently signed a multi-year contract with Hampshire, having made his first-class debut with them in the back half of the 2018 County Championship season. Oli is a top order right-hand batsman, and we’re looking forward to seeing him in action wearing the green and gold. Welcome aboard, Oli!

We’re also very excited to be offering special wine tastings on the night, with local business Hudsons Road Wine & Beer getting on board to help extend our range. They’ll bring a sparkling, white, pink and red wine for you to try, which you can then buy by the glass. Food will be available to buy on the night too, courtesy of Simo and our kitchen crew.

And last, but by no means least, we want to make it a special night for our juniors, so we’re encouraging every Spotty family to come on down. All junior players (including our Junior and Master Blasters) get free pizza – make sure you wear your playing top so we can see you’re a player. And be there at 5 for the chance to form a guard of honour as the players head out onto the ground.

Come and cheer your team into the finals, and invite your friends and family to join you. The more the merrier!

Social Sixes at Spotty!

We’re excited to be hosting Social Sixes at the club from Thursday 29 November! This is run by Cricket Victoria, and at just $10 per session, with no need to commit to the full four weeks, it’s the perfect taster of cricket. Final session will be Thursday 20 December.

Make sure you book though! We need a minimum number for the session to go ahead.

From the Social Sixes website

“Social Sixes is an exciting NEW cricket program specifically designed for women! It’s perfect if you are looking for a fun, fast and social mid-week activity!

The session focuses on activities that are designed to get your heart pumping as well as teach you the skills required to play cricket. There’s no need to worry about equipment, we’ve got that sorted. All you need to do is rock up and be ready to get involved.

So, if you’re looking for a fresh new way to keep active, grab some friends and give Social Sixes a try!”

Come along and have a go!