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Season 2006/07 - Year 6

The sixth season of the SSCUA began with the holding of its 5th Annual General Meeting on 19 July 2006. The meeting held at the Redfern RSL was attended by 21 members of a total of 50 currently at the time holding membership, (a drop of 4 from the previous end season 05/06 tally of 54). For the first time in the Associations short history the management committee from the previous season into the new season was unchanged. George Richards was elected President for his 2nd term, Geoff Taylor filled the role for Vice President while Stephen Blomfield (Secretary) and Gordon Smith (Treasurer) were both re-instated unopposed for their 6th terms in office. Jim Shellens, Chris Kearney, and Trevor Schokman all put their hands up for the general committee positions for the 2nd season in a row.

Membership numbers were up with 57 members on the book up by 3 from the previous season. A turnaround from the previous season saw a slightly improved percentage of members who participated in on field umpiring rather than being non-active. It was pleasing to note this season that we as an Association were able to basically hold steady with the numbers of umpires we provided to the Shires Competition whilst our parent body (NSWCU&SA) who provided umpires to Grade Cricket suffered a mini crisis this season with significant loss of members and available umpires. The result of this drop off in umpires for Grade cricket resulted in many SCA 5th grade games not having umpires at all. A crisis meeting held mid season isolated many issues that needed urgent attention and it is hoped next season some major changes to umpires uniform and match payments will be addressed.

The season saw the reintroduction of the tough wide calls in limited overs matches after a one season trial in 2005/06 relaxing this issue was deemed a failure by the SCA committee of management. This was the only major playing condition change for 2006/07.

On field the Shires Competitions Umpire allocations suffered by receiving zero flow down from Grade cricket due to the rapid decline of Grade Umpires as detailed two paragraphs back. Despite the fact we received no flow down from Grade cricket our allocation rate in second grade cricket actually improved from the previous season from 64% coverage to 73% coverage (1st Grade allocation rate was, as always, 100%). This is testament to the fact that many part time Shires umpires from 2005/06 made themselves available for more matches in 2006/07. A good result.

Other Issues this season included -

* Reported Players - 12 (Up from 11 last season)

* Judiciary Matters - Major Improvement from last season with all matters reports by members attended to within a week of the matter being sent to the SCA

* Improved relations with the SCA saw a system in place where Captains reports were able to be sourced in a far more timely an efficient manner as compared to the previous season

* Chris Kearney umpired the Shires XI v Churches XI rep match at Rothwell Park in February 2007

* Stephen Blomfield umpired the Shires XI v Grade XI rep match at the SCG in December 2006

* Jim Shellens & Gordon Smith umpired their 100th Career Shires Match

* Lack of support from the SCA / Shires Sub Committee / Shires Clubs regarding Umpire recruitment initiatives continue to persist

* Poor attendance by our members at the end of season Shires Presentation dinner (7 members / 3 partners)

* Peter Friend & Chris Taylor appointed to the 1st Grade Grand Final won by South Sydney CC

* Gordon Smith & Ken Buckland appointed to the Frank Gray (Under 24) Grand Final won by Lane Cove CC

* Chris Taylor took out the umpire of the year award for the 2nd year in a row and Trevor Schokman won the Most improved Umpire of the Year.