Avoca’s Gavan Hicks, has lived every cricketer’s dream of making a century for Australia at the home of cricket, the Melbourne Cricket Ground. Playing in The Lord’s Taverners Cricket Tri Series for players with an intellectual disability, Gavan managed just nine with the bat in the opening match against South Africa.
However, Australia went on to win this contest comfortably by 67 runs. In the game at the MCG against arch rivals England, Gavan was the star smashing 113 off 100 balls. The boundary remained in the normal position and Hicks put one delivery off the opening bowler over the sightscreen for a tremendous six. His 113 was the highest Cricket Tri Series individual score in history with the previous best of 86 by Rex Breed during the 2005 final. Gavan was ecstatic after bringing up his century and parents Doug and Debbie, who were in the stands, would have been rapt. A century at the MCG – no doubt a lifelong memory for the Hicks family. Australia made 4/213 off 40 overs and then bundled England out for just 68. Gavan was named man of the match and presented with a trophy. Australia then lined up against South Africa with the visitors batting first and hitting up the competitive score of 9/182. After taking the very impressive figures of 4/28, Gavan led the scoring with the willow again. The result was a second century – 109 off just 88 balls in a match-winning performance as Australia cruised to victory. Again Doug and Debbie were on hand to enjoy their son’s wonderful achievement. The scheduled match against England at Geelong was to have been of great significance for Gavan. He had been honoured with the vice captaincy of the team at the start of the tournament but the captain was to have had a spell on Tuesday and Gavan was to have been the skipper for the match. Unfortunately the statewide rain put paid to any play at all. With both teams gaining a point for the washout, England edged South Africa out of the final which was played yesterday at the Junction Oval. Coach of the Australian team, Paul Montgomery, told The Advertiser earlier in the week that Gavan had played in the same competition in England last season. “He made a couple of half centuries and we were really happy,” he said. “But this season we wanted him to go on and build big scores, which he has now done,” the Australian coach said. “We hope he has another big knock left in him for Thursday’s final,” Montgomery said. As The Advertiser was going to press, in the final at the Junction Oval, the players were off the ground because of rain. Australia had won the toss and sent England in to bat and dismissed its arch rival for 123 with Gavan taking 3/14. Australia was 2/79 in the 13th over with Gavan not out 33 when the rain came.