Resumption after World War 1

///Resumption after World War 1
Resumption after World War 1 2017-05-21T10:12:31+00:00

After a break of four seasons on account of the war, the Association's competitions were resumed in the 1919-20 season. The Mercury reported that "prospects were very bright for a highly successful revival".

At a meeting on September 22 1919, the Association's executive was re-formed. Elias Bowden continued on as President; John Lintott, who had been Assistant Secretary in 1914-15, was appointed Secretary; and Harold Johnston took over as Treasurer from Bill Lindsay who had held that position from 1894 right up until 1915.

When entries closed, satisfaction was expressed at "the splendid response". There were 5 entries for A grade: Northern Division, East Maitland Literary Institute, Robins, Kurri Kurri and Hinton; and 15 entries for B grade: Weston, Northern Division, East Greta, Robins, Oakhampton, East Maitland Literary Institute, Mulbring, Hinton, Black Hill, Millers Forest, Lochinvar, Kurri Kurri, Morpeth, Buchanan and Marist Brothers.

A new club to appear was Marist Brothers which was formed at the start of the season. It was associated with the Catholic High School and adopted the school's colours of purple and gold. It was to use a matting wicket at the Park on the present site of Black Hill ground.

One problem that caused some concern at the start of the season was the "class of ball" to be used, as there was "a great scarcity of leather balls in the State". Eventually it was left to the clubs to "provide the best leather balls obtainable".

An interesting feature of the opening round, noted by the Mercury reporter, was that two of the top run getters in the days of the old Albions and Pearls and in the immediate pre-war period were "still in the front rank". He was referring to Leon Moore who top-scored for Robins with 76 not out, and Bob Lindsay who scored for Northern Division with 45 not out.

Unfortunately, East Maitland Literary Institute withdrew from the A grade competition in early November. The competition was won by Robins which completed the season undefeated.

The junior competition was won by Buchanan. However, this competition was far too long and ran into May, leading to a number of forfeits and to some of the teams dropping out to play football.

Alterations at the Showground put the wicket at the Albion ground out of use for the season. This meant that the Association's home representative matches had to be played on concrete wickets. It was not until Easter 1920 that a new turf wicket put down by the Robins Club on the old Pearl ground at the Park was ready for use.

The inter-district matches against Newcastle were again resumed. Matches were also arranged against Dungog and against a NSWCA team at Easter; while HRDCA 'B' teams played matches against the Branxton DCA and the Cessnock DCA.

Among the players who represented the Association in these early post-World War 1 senior representative matches were R Loder, L Moore, A Watson, M Butler, W Johnston, LJ Scobie, R McLean., Frank McMullen, HRDCA President 1920-25, C Butler, P Watson, W Tegg, K Mosman, P Ebbeck and A Dodds.

At the Annual Meeting, Elias Bowden, who had been President of the Association since 1903, announced his retirement. Described as "one of the best workers in the interests of cricket in the district', he had guided the Association through some difficult years. As a mark of the high respect in which he was held, he was unanimously elected as Patron,of the Association. His successor as President was Frank McMullen, the Headmaster of Maitland Boys High School.