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The Snick - Queanbeyan Cricket – 150 years strong......

As we approach the 150th anniversary of the Queanbeyan Cricket Club, we take a look back at the incredible history behind the baggy blue cap.

THIS week, The Snick will attempt the no-doubt controversial task of selecting a best of the best Queanbeyan line-up from throughout the club's history.

For the sake of fairness, players will only be chosen from the period 1923-2013 when data exists to support their selection. And while purists will tell you stats only tell one side of the story, you have to start somewhere.

We start at the top of the order and Jono Dean immediately comes to mind. Yes a current player whose records are still evolving but there's no question as to his genius with the bat. He brutalizes attacks and hits the ball as hard as anyone to have worn the baggy blue.

The other opening position goes to a somewhat left-field suggestion in Mark Thornton. An opening batsman with the ACT, he chose to bat down the order for Queanbeyan to balance the side up but his all-round class and medium fast bowling would add a lot to any outfit.

In the always crucial number three spot, current club president Peter Solway is arguably the best number three batsman ever to play in Australian Country Cricket and is an automatic pick. Three down, eight to go.

Then we come to the middle order. There are so many great batsman but also so many genuine all-rounders.

John Bull, Mark Higgs, Neil Bulger, Terry Freebody, Gary Samuels and Ray Flockton are all champions but then where does one fit in the likes Les Manwaring, Tom O'Connor, Adam Heading and Neville Croker?

In the end, only so many players can be chosen and The Snick's selections go to Bull at no.4, Bulger at no.5 and Higgs at no.6 with Samuels at no.7.

The wicket keeping position is just as contentious with a number of superb glovemen in the frame.

Jack McNamara with 31 seasons of first grade, Michael Carruthers and his sublime hands and immeasurable batting talent or even current skipper Aaron Ayre who is already all class.

And then there is Brad Haddin, even though he only played his junior cricket and a couple of seasons with the Bluebags on his way to become one of Australia's finest.

In the end, Haddin must be the choice and he slots in at no.8.

Into the tailenders now and Qbn's incredible array of talent means we've already listed four opening bowling options in Bull, Bulger, Thornton and Samuels in the top seven. To that list are added Lea Hansen and Tom O'Conner.

The final spot goes to a tweaker and while Frank Nash would be an obvious choice, that's three left-arm finger spinners with Bulger and Higgs already in the line-up.

Instead, The Snick is going with Wayne Campbell and his leg spinners. A former opening bat with the ACT, he also provides a bit of magic at no.9.

Selection meeting adjured but it's clear you could name three more sides and still produce a team equal of anything across the ACT.

The Snick's Queanbeyan XI (1923-2013):Jono Dean, Mark Thornton, Peter Solway, John Bull, Neil Bulger, Mark Higgs, Gary Samuels, Brad Haddin (wk), Wayne Campbell, Lea Hansen and Tom O'Connor.

All current and former players are reminded that the RSVP for the big weekend of celebrations is fast approaching (5 February) so please go to the 150th Anniversary page for more information time is running out and numbers are limited.

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