Fire Brigade cricketer Scott Fleming's return to the fray after a considerable absence has reaped rewards with a nine-wicket haul.PATRICK O'MEARA November 13, 2012 4:05am
In 1996, Mark Taylor was the captain of the Australian cricket team and Sachin Tendulkar had just compiled his 20th Test century.
And Kyabram’s Scott Fleming had put his cricket career on hold, having played since juniors with Fire Brigade in Kyabram District Cricket Association.
Fast forward to now, and Taylor is in the Channel 9 commentary box having long-since retired one of Australia’s most decorated captains.
Tendulkar has established himself as one of the greatest cricketers of all-time with 100 international centuries.
And Fleming has dusted off the whites to make a comeback with the Flames in the new Goulburn Murray Cricket competition.
While the 41-year-old’s feats may not weigh up against Taylor and Tendulkar, his bowling efforts at the weekend leave him in rare company.
The self-confessed ‘‘on-the-spot’’ bowler snared 9-11 in a whirlwind seven-over spell in D-grade against Girgarre on Saturday.
He narrowly missed a magical 10-wicket haul when first slipsman Damien Varcoe grassed a chance.
But Fleming was unfazed.
‘‘I was pretty happy with nine,’’ Fleming said with a laugh.
‘‘I was quite stoked with it, actually.
‘‘It was just one of those days.’’
He said his teammates were more critical of Varcoe’s effort.
‘‘I thought it was a good effort just to get to it,’’ Fleming said.
‘‘A few of the other boys got into him, they wouldn’t let him hear the end of it.
‘‘But I didn’t mind and he was the first to buy me a beer after the game.’’
Fleming last played with the Flames in 1996.
Describing himself as a ‘‘social cricketer’’, he decided to pull the pin because of other priorities.
He was lured back to Kyabram’s Northern Oval this season with his eldest son Matthew playing in the Flames’ under-12 side.
Matthew is the second of four children for Fleming and the eldest of three boys.
Ashley, 13, is the oldest and his two youngest boys are Shannon, 8, and Jarrad, 7.
It was the lure of potentially playing with his three boys that got him back on the cricket field.
‘‘That is the hope,’’ he said.
‘‘The boys are growing up and they really enjoy cricket.
‘‘The opportunity to potentially play with them has really revamped my enthusiasm.
‘‘We are probably still a few years off that, but hopefully the body holds up and I can be out there with all of them.
‘‘We will just see how we go.’’
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Motorists are encouraged to attend a safe plates day on Saturday, after police statistics showed 23 numberplates stolen from Echuca in the past year.
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