by JUSTIN FLYNN
COLLENDINA Cricket Club co-captain Corey Walter won the prestigious Ray Menzies Medal awarded to the best player in the Bellarine Peninsula Cricket Association.
At the BPCA presentation awards at Leopold Sportsman’s Club last Thursday night, Walter polled 16 votes to win an exciting count by two votes from Portarlington champion Paul McGrath. Ocean Grove coach Paul Jubber tied for third place.
It was Walter’s second Menzies Medal after he had a consistent season as an opening batsman for the Cobras, amassing 464 runs at an average of 46.40 as well as taking nine wickets with his seamers. Walter blasted a century in round 10 to earn three votes to catapult him to victory after he had a lean season in 2014-’15.
“I was pretty happy to get back to making some runs again and getting back to opening the batting,“ he said. “I was pretty embarrassed with last season and was keen on bouncing back and contributing again. I think the difference this year was just enjoying it a lot more and not trying to put too much pressure on myself and just enjoy playing with my mates again.”
Walter’s win did not make up for the disappointment of Collendina losing the grand final to Anglesea. “The ultimate goal is to win a premiership with your mates, but Anglesea played very well and totally deserved it,“ he said. “Personally I was pretty happy with my season. I probably got found out a bit last season batting in the middle with the medium pacers whereas I prefer the ball coming onto the bat a bit more and opening was the right move.“
Walter and fellow co-skipper Ben Ricardo both made centuries in the final round, but Walter was awarded the three votes to earn him the medal. “I wasn’t too sure who was going to poll the three votes, but a few junk-time wickets might have gotten me over the line,“ he said.
Meanwhile, Ocean Grove veteran Craig D’Arcy is showing no signs of letting up, winning the C Grade batting averages announced at the BPCA presentation night. D’Arcy made 346 runs at 56.67.