Self defence is the use of equal or lesser force. No one has a right to swing a god damn cricket bat at anyone.Historically most clubs in most competitions have digressed in one way or another. And there have been some pretty aggressive and difficult clubs that have played in the NMCA over the last century. However, I don't ever recall any club ever being suspended or expelled without a hearing, any charged being laid, or having a shred of evidence to support such an unprecedented decision, present or past. Based on that, it would appear that the board of the NMCA, or certain members of that board had already pre-determined the outcome for Camrea (and Lalor), and the events of the grand final was just what they needed to carry out there judgement. As a neutral observer, I have been trying to understand and make sense of how they reached their decision. But to this day, nothing I can see that happened on grand final day could have possibly led them to make the decision they did. Fact is that apart from the young man from Camrea who threw his bat at a Lalor player, and that seemed to be in self defense clearly from the vision that most of us had access to at the time, not one Camrea player or supporter was reported. On the other hand, the NMCA reported and suspended I think up to 7 players and associated supporters from Lalor. No matter how you look at it, something just doesn't make sense. I have played cricket against Camrea for many years and have always admired their success. I have been privelaged to play against some of the greatest players to ever play in the NMCA, Jesensek, Turnbull, McGann, Pougious. Yes they played tough and hard, but they always played fair. The facts are that Camrea, together with Rosebank at the time, where just superior to any other club. I know our club was jealous of them both for dominating the competition for over a decade. And many of our members would abused them and hated them. I think back and wonder why the sentiment at the time? Now I feel sorry for them and about the decision that the clubs handed down last Thursday. It's not just a club that the NMCA have suspended. Its families, past players, junior cricketers. I think Camrea had 3 senior sides, a woman's team, and a junior team. That's around 60 cricketers that just won't be playing cricket this season, or will need to find another club. Our club was certainly not one of the clubs who voted against them.
I just kept thinking about if that was my club how I would be feeling right now. I can only imagine what the whole Camrea people must be going through right now. I personally wish them well and hope they can bounce back from this. The NMCA has seen too many clubs go under or move across to other competitions in the past 10-15 years. This would just be another one to add to the list. I only wish that the NMCA could have found a better resolution, and perhaps we may not be talking about this today.
Regardless of opinions, the club have spoken. Yes the way the association originally went about it was wrong, but both sides were heard and the votes were placed. Both clubs have no one else to blame but themselves.