Wodonga mainstay BJ Garvey will celebrate his 100th first grade match in Saturday’s home T20 blockbuster against Lavington.
The left-hander debuted almost a decade ago at 16.
“I just enjoy playing with my mates and we haven’t always had the most talented side, but we always have to fight to win and that’s just the way we like to do it,” he said.
Wodonga thrives on that ‘tough’ mentality, but it’s certainly boasted the association’s best batsman of the past decade in former Australian Country rep and current coach Robbie Jackson.
The hard-hitting Jack Craig can also blister an attack, so Garvey plays a different role.
“Fighter I’d say,” he said.
“That’s pretty much it, scrapper, don’t give up my wicket easy.
“I like to think I can hit a big ball, but I can’t hit as big as those blokes, I just work the gaps and try and hit the odd boundary here or there, just wait for the bad ball.”
The 25-year-old has now played 169 games in all grades, racking up 2966 runs, posting an unbeaten 100 and 15 half-centuries.
“I came into the side as a specialist fielder I suppose, I wasn’t the best bat,” he said.
“I wasn’t the wicketkeeper at the time because Ian Roberts was, he was a gun keeper.
“I kept in juniors and once ‘Robbo’ left, I took over.
“I’ve also opened the batting.”
He opened the batting in the season’s first T20 game, but then moved down to number five in round two.
Garvey was pushed further down to seven in his first bat in the 50-over win over East Albury last week.
Although there’s two separate competitions this season - the T20 will have its own grand final in late January - Lavington is expected to be a powerhouse in both.
“We won’t back down obviously,” Garvey said.
“We’ve got a few young kids that are going to be absolute superstars in our side.
“Michael Grohmann, he made 42 last week against a very good bowling line-up, led by (East Albury’s) Cam White.
“Mitch Dinneen, he’s only 18, he opens the batting for us, he looks like he’s going to be an absolute gun as well.”
Meanwhile, Lavington’s Brett Davies admits the club’s variety with the ball was an internal talking point after the loss to North Albury last week.
“We’ve got five or six seam-up bowlers and even though we’re all sort of different, there is an element of sameness about it,” he said.
“(As for as spinners go) we have Mick Galvin, Matty Tom, who can bowl some part-time spin, they’ll no doubt be called upon.”
But batting has been the issue, failing to last 50 overs.
“I suppose it’s just the will and resilience to push through,” Davies said.
“When you leave 50 balls when you’re playing one of the best, you’re going to get your pants pulled down.”
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