Charlie Reid, our oldest living life member, was a dour opening batsman throughout the 1950s. He captained the first XI on a rotational basis - a position that often had the presidency attached to it as well. These honours were shared between Reid, Noel Wall and Don Jones. Having to compete with Jones for awards was obviously not an easy task for anyone and he was unable to claim any averages, although Wall claims he cost Reid dearly one season, when a decision was made to bat again in a second innings. Reid retired hurt on eight after being struck and in came Jones to score the necessary runs and claim the batting award. But Reid is regarded as the person to change the club colours to red and white, as we know it today. The change was made to keep it in line with the Olinda Ferny Creek Football Netball Club.
When Noel Wall traveled up the Geelong Road with his family in the early 1950s and settled in the hills, even he wouldn't have dreamed that over 50 years later, he would still be winning awards from his local cricket club. In a career that spanned over three decades, Wall captained the first XI on a rotation basis. He once managed to win a second XI batting average and during his first XI days, he too, along with Charlie Reid, battled with Don Jones for the major awards. Although never coming out on top in these battles, don't be fooled, as Wall was recognised by his peers as an outstanding bat, and a more than capable on-field leader.
Don Jones' cricket career is simply brilliant. After stints in the district competition with Essendon and North Melbourne - where only recently a first XI batting partnership involving Jones from 50 years ago was finally broken at North Melbourne - he ventured to Olinda. Jones became the premier batsman at the club for 15 years, winning 15 first XI batting averages in a row. He also claimed in three FTGDCA averages in 1952/53, 1954/55 and 1957/58. When you consider he was also a multiple first XI bowling average winner, it's easy to see why he is regarded as our finest all-time player. It is also widely regarded that if the FTGDCA was to sit down and select a team of the century, Jones would be one of the first picked. Jones also captained the club on a rotational basis, making him the complete package. The OCC 1st XI Best & Fairest is now named in his honour !
Keith Rankin began his career with Olinda in 1959 and by the time he called it a day - 15 years later - he had a proud record to reflect on. He was recognised as one of the first XI's finest fieldsman during his era, winning many fielding awards. But he will be best remembered as the hard working cricketer who served a number of years as the first XI vice-captain. Rankin played at the beginning of what is considered the club's golden period, where finals and grand finals were considered the norm. He also played with the likes of Don Jones and Graeme Rayner, where averages were hard to achieve. Rankin later went to the Ringwood District Cricket Club and was pivotal in linking the strong connection between Ringwood and Olinda, which remains today, with many players crossing between both clubs for cricket and football.
Graeme Rayner was highly rated by his peers and played 10 seasons for Olinda from 1964-74. When he announced he was moving to Queensland, the club was shocked, as he was captain at the time. But during his time with the club, he followed in the footsteps of his father Ted and captained the first XI, leading the side in many grand final appearances. He was an outstanding player in all facets of the game, winning five first XI batting averages, three first XI bowling averages and two club all-rounder awards, which were awarded by the club at the time. In 1969/70 he won the FTGDCA best cricketer award - equivalent to the league best-and-fairest. His record stacks up against the club's best.
John Clancy is somewhat of a legend throughout the hills. Those that know him well swore by him and those that have only heard of him always want to know more. Although Clancy may have had a wild boy reputation, his results cannot ever be underestimated. In a playing career spanning from the early 1970s through to the early '80s, Clancy terrorised batsmen across the RDCA competition - regularly recording 50-plus wickets a season. He won the first XI bowling award six times in a row, taking over from where Graeme Rayner left off. Clancy was also an integral part of a strong Olinda outfit during his era, having been involved in several premiership attempts. Aside from his outstanding achievements with the ball, he was also known for his strong late order hitting. The OCC 1st XI Bowling Average is now named in his honour !
Although he now calls himself a Queenslander, Fitzgerald spent the bulk of his career as a strong and fearless opener or number three bat. He represented the club during three decades stretching from the mid 1970s through to the early '90s. Fitzgerald claimed his inaugural first eleven batting award in the early nineties, adding to his four second XI batting awards. He too was a victim of the dreaded Olinda grand final curse, representing the club in the last match of the year several times but each time missing the prize. Fitzgerald was a remarkably consistent performer for a long period of time. He was also a more than capable wicket-keeper, donning the gloves for lengthy periods in both the first and second elevens.
Peter Hayne is larger than life in many ways and he remains one of the most passionate and competitive people to ever represent the club. Hayne began with Olinda in the late 1970s and until his retirement in the early '90s, he was one of our premier cricketers and one of the most driven players to represent the club. He possesses an outstanding record and rates as one of our greatest all-rounders. Hayne claimed two first XI batting averages and four first XI bowling averages during one of the club's strongest periods. He also managed a second XI batting average. In 1990/91, when the first eleven slipped to B-grade and had a senior list of nine players, Hayne was captain/coach. It was a credit to him that the club continued during that period, but it was no surprise to anyone, considering his zest was first and foremost.
Tony Duggan joined Olinda during a time when many great names were playing in the red and white throughout the 1970s and '80s. He led the club to the finals, but like many of his contemporaries, he missed out on premiership success, namely in 1975/76, where a grand final appearance lead to another disappointment. But Duggan continued to flourish and he became one of the best medium-pace bowlers to represent Olinda. He claimed four first XI bowling averages and was an integral part of a strong bowling line-up. At the end of the 1980/81 season, Duggan struck a form slump. Club great Noel Wall suggested to Duggan that he give up his bowling, but he responded in the best possible manner, winning the RDCA A-grade bowling average the following year. Either Wall got it terribly wrong or his reverse psychology was ahead of its time.
William 'Billy' Oliver was one of the most competitive players to represent the club. He joined Olinda in the early 1980s and was already a fully fledged RDCA champion, having spent many years going into battle for Kilsyth in the competition's top grade - Chandler Shield. He was captain/coach of a team that was arguably one of the best sides in the club's history. Oliver regularly compiled centuries and took five-wicket hauls. He had a signature shuffle up to the bowling crease, which regularly trapped batsmen time-and-time again into his web of deceit. In 1988/89, the club began to stall, but no-one could fault 'Ollies' performances, as he won the RDCA A-grade best and fairest award. He also won three first XI batting averages and two first XI bowling averages during his time at the club. After a stint away from the club, he returned to lead the side into a semi-final, before he bowed out after yet another grand final loss in 1997/98.
Stewey Beale is a larger than life character to many of us. As a senior cricketer, he was fortunate, as he was taught by some of the club's best players - and it reflected in his own game. He was an extremely competitive cricketer and never once raised the white flag. Amid the long hair and fearsome stares lived a relaxed man, who loved nothing better than a Saturday 'arvo' with his mates, followed up by a couple of 'green ones' off the field. His ability out on the ground was something to see. He ranks as one of the greatest fielders the club has seen - he won eight first XI fielding awards. But it was his bowling - he won two second XI bowling averages in his early years before winning the RDCA B-grade bowling average in 1991/92 - that was his greatest strength. The following season, he won the RDCA B-grade best and fairest award. After 15 years of first XI cricket, he led the side, as captain/coach to the 1997/98 grand final, but like many of his predecessors, was denied the opportunity of becoming a premiership player.
Steve 'Sid' Scott's career followed a similar timeline to Stewie Beale's - both players were just youngsters when they were members of first XI finals sides in the early 1980s. During the late '80s, he forged a reputation as a stylish batsmen but it wasn't until the early to mid '90s - after a series of major back operations - that he began to plunder RDCA bowling attacks. But he was also a disciplined batsman and it suited him immensely. In 1994/95, Scott won the RDCA B-grade batting average, after returning from one of his back operations. He smashed over 700 runs in just eight innings. This included an epic innings at Croydon Hockeyers, where he faced the first ball of the day and remained until the final delivery of the day. That single off the final delivery turned into what is believed to be the first double century hit in the club's history. Scott had several stints as captain/coach and also won three first XI batting averages. But the highlight of his career came in 1999/2000, when he was involved in the club's fifth 1st XI premiership - and Olinda's first since 1947/48. Steve is one of only four people honoured with dual life memberships of both the Olinda Ferny Creek Football Netball Club and Olinda Cricket Club
Adam will simply go down in history as one of the OCC's modern greats. From a 1st XI career that began back in the mid 90s, all the way through to the end of the 2010/11 season, he remained the ultimate competitor. He found his feet with his medium pace bowling in the summer of 97/98 where the 1st XI lost the Grand Final, but he claimed the first of three bowling averages in a row. In 99/00 he also claimed the RDCA Newey bowling average to top off the 1st XI's Premiership year. He was to go on and claim 3 competition bowling awards in total, and in the summer of 2009/10, he claimed the bowling average, the Newey Medal for the competition Best & Fairest, and the Don Jones Medal for the OCC Best & Fairest, just to top off a premiership year (his third). All in all, he claimed the clubs 1st XI Bowling award on 6 occasions (also a 2nd XI award in 95/96) and was quite simply "the" bowler of his era. He was also a more than handy lower batsman who could score quickly, and he made his mark in the field in Gully where he made an artform of taking freakish catches and saving runs that others couldn't.
When most people hear the name "Mick Scott", they would more than likely associate it with football rather than cricket. He is one of Olinda's most decorated footballers of all-time and now enters elite company in its cricket club as well. From the late 80s into the early 90s, he came and went from cricket. But by the mid 90s had begun to establish himself at the top of the order in the 1st XI as a very reliable batsman, with the ability to score quick runs when required. In the end, he went onto to forge an extremely successful career played well past 10 seasons. He claimed the clubs 1st XI batting award three times, which in two of those years (95/96 & 97/98) also won him the competitions batting award. He was an integral part of the 99/00 drought breaking 1st XI Premiership, and played right through until the heartbreaking Grand Final loss of 2004/05. Added to this was his ability to bowl during different seasons in different ways, combining medium pace at times with leg spin. It was with leg spin that he claimed a 1st XI hat trick at Norwood. He was also a brilliant fielder with the ability to take catches in slips, take outfield catches or hit the stumps from cover with regular ease.