Age no barrier in cricket
THESE four men epitomise what sport is about.
Queensland Senior Cricket representatives Les Price, Brian Kratzmann, Terry Andrews and Darryl Stewart are back after they competed at the national seniors championship in Hobart.
They played on some of the best pitches in the country, with the lightning outfield fast enough to test men half their age.
While they would have preferred to enjoy victory - the over-70s fell just one run short after rain stopped play - all four spoke fondly of the camaraderie and joy in simply playing the game.
"All these old geezers are pretty competitive," Stewart said.
"They all play hard but play it fair."
Stewart has played the game for 63 years, and still runs around (slightly slower than fast bowling son Lachlan) for Tinana in the Fraser Coast Cricket competition.
Kratzmann finished with the honour of being named his side's best at the four-day competition.
He retired with the bat most days (you retire after passing 35 runs in seniors cricket), and finished with two wickets.
"I only got two wickets but had a few catches dropped," he said.
"At our age, unless the ball is coming to you you don't get it too easily.
"The other tough catch is the high one. It's hard to judge in the air and you have to get your head and neck back which can be difficult."
Bowler Andrews said the pitch made it difficult to take wickets as batsmen dominated.
"Most of the games only saw five or six wickets fall, he said. "You had to bash the ball and get as many runs as you can.
"I was opening bowling in the second side and managed to snavel one wicket on each day."
Price captained the O70s outfit, and despite a grand final loss coming by way of a calculator said he and his side enjoyed the tournament.
"The rain came with eight overs to go and they were on 202," Price said.
"On the calculations, the first time we worked it out was a tie but we went through again and they'd won by one."
The Coast's senior cricketers will enjoy a few months off before the Cooper-Finlay Cup, a State of Origin-style series, in March.