The Great Southern Cricket Association starts its season on Saturday

TEAM TO BEAT: Last season's A grade premiers were Noarlunga and they will be the team to beat once again in 2019/20.
TEAM TO BEAT: Last season's A grade premiers were Noarlunga and they will be the team to beat once again in 2019/20.

Given the Ashes campaign and the World Cup, you'd be forgiven for thinking that cricket season never really stopped after the last weekend of March earlier this year. However, a new season is upon us and with that comes a change of tack from the 12th Man.

You can expect detailed match reports from the A Grade as always, but we're going to go wider through the other senior grades and also shine a light on the stars of the future through Senior and Junior Colts. The A Grade has maintained an eight-team competition once again. The push of Myponga/Sellicks up into A Grade has coincided with Yankalilla relegating down.

Myponga host McLaren Districts in Round 1. Reigning premiers Noarlunga begin their defence at home to Goolwa, with the other grand finalist Willunga taking to the turf at Encounter Bay. The final game sees Port Elliot host Mount Compass.

The Bulls will have a turf wicket this season and it has attracted some new and old faces back to Burgess Oval. Michael Tucker (Yankalilla) and Aaron Dalitz (Uraidla) will play, while Port Elliot welcomes back Simon Donaldson from a season away at his former club, but have lost young quick Ben Maier.

The remaining two day grades are now B and C Grade. The B Grade has retained almost all of the B1 teams from 2018/19, aside from the movement between Yankalilla and Myponga. The Tigers, the reigning B2 premiers are also part of a straight swap between the C Grade and One Day Competition, with Mount Compass pushing their side up into two-day cricket. The One Day Competition also welcome Rapid Bay back in and a second Willunga team to make a 10 team grade.

In the Under 12's, Yankalilla and Mount Compass have shifted to the northern competition, with a total of eight teams across McLaren Districts, Noarlunga, Willunga and Aldinga. Along the coast, Port Elliot are providing three teams with Encounter Bay, Goolwa and Victor Harbor making up a six-team southern competition. This makes 14 teams in total.

Finally, our youngest grade, the Under 10's have also grown by two teams, a positive sign for the future of cricket. Well done to McLaren Districts who have added a second team and also Yankalilla coming into the competition.

All in all, cricket is looking reasonably healthy across the Great Southern Cricket Association. Our best players will be pushing towards representative teams across junior and senior cricket in the second half of the season, including a trip to Kangaroo Island for the senior Meyer Shield.