Big Bash proves a big hit



IT may be winter, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still play cricket.
The Melbourne Stars visited a number of local schools last week, promoting their upcoming Big Bash League matches to be played in the Valley.
Team Green will play a jam-packed festival in November, fronting up for back-to-back games at Ted Summerton Reserve, Moe.
As part of the local activation, the Stars visited Churchill Primary School and Morwell Park
Primary School last Wednesday, bringing men’s fast bowler Brody Couch and women’s left arm orthodox Sophie Day along for the ride.
The pair took students through a range of cricket activities, spruiking all good things involving the summer game.
The Stars have made Gippsland, and specifically Moe, their second home in recent years, playing a number of matches at the venue colloquially known as ‘Ted’.
Melbourne Stars also have a strong link to the area, with current women’s wicket keeper Nicole Faltum herself a Valley girl.
Faltum grew up in Moe, and played junior and senior cricket for Trafalgar Cricket Club and
women’s cricket for Morwell Cricket Club.
Day said the team, and especially her Gippsland teammate, were looking forward to the November double-header.
“Super-pumped for the Moe games, hopefully everyone has a nice day,” she said.
“We have been out to Moe a few times. Faltsy (Nicole), she is up-and-about.
“It has been super-exciting, it is so nice to get back into Melbourne, the last two seasons we have been playing elsewhere, to see the fans, getting in amongst it, I think it means a lot to the club,” she said.
The Stars are continuing to add to a proud connection to cricket in Gippsland, made even
stronger in recent months with the appointment of Bairnsdale’s Sophie Molineux as captain of Victoria.
With women’s cricket being played at the current Commonwealth Games, and the sport set to come straight to the region for the 2026 instalment, the next few years could well see cricket reach the popularity it enjoyed in the mid-2000s.
As youngsters at Morwell Park Primary School eagerly went about their cricket last Wednesday, perhaps the next Peter Siddle was even among the cohort.
Students at Morwell Park should have little trouble finding encouragement in their sport, given the number of staff heavily involved in local clubs.
You would be hard pressed to find a sportier school than Morwell Park: Staff members include Gippsland League netball A Grade best-and-fairest Courtney Garth, Morwell senior footballers Tyler Hillier, Tristen Waack and Riley Oddy, and Yallourn Yallourn North senior footballers Jai Massese and Dylan Bentley.