Midland Guildford Cricket Club paid tribute to Keith SlaterKevin Gartrell and with a Gala Dinner held at Swan Districts Football Club on 11 December 2013 celebrating the Inauguration of the Keith Slater - Kevin Gartrell Medal to be awarded to the Club First Grade Champion at the completion of 2013-14 season.

Over 250 people attended the evening. They included the Minister for Sport and Recreation; Racing and Gaming, Hon. Terry Waldron MLA who was a guest speaker who had played against Keith and Kevin during his playing days with Claremont-Cottesloe Cricket Club. Also present were Past Presidents, Secretaries, Patrons, Life Members, former club Test players, past and current players to celebrate the evening.

Bruce Yardley was Master of Ceremonies and guest speakers included former Test players, Tom Moody, Brendan Julian, Simon Katich and Tony Mann, former WACA President, Brain Rakich AM and former England Test player and manager, Micky Stewart and his wife Sheila, parents of former club great and England Test Captain, Alec Stewart.

Wally Edwards, Chairman, Cricket Australia and a former Club and Test player provided his apologies for the evening and wrote aforewordtribute published in the souvenir booklet for guests commemorating the evening.

Keith was first selected as a batsman to represent the club First Grade at the age of 15 years in 1950. He was a versatile all-rounder skilled in both off spin and fast medium swing bowling. Keith was added to the State squad and made his First Class debut during the 1955-56 season, played one Test match for Australia against England during the 1958-59 Ashes series (first West Australian to play a Test against England) and retired from First Class Cricket at the completion of 1957-68 season, playing 74 First Class matches, 2198 runs, 140 wickets and 50 catches. Keith was awarded WACA Life Membership in October 2013.

Keith captained the Club for eight seasons and played in two First Grade premierships in 1968-69 and 1969-70 season. After twentyfour years, Keith retired from First Grade cricket at the completion of 1973/74 season with the following statistics:

Matches: 259 – Club record

Runs: 5770

Centuries: 6

Wickets: 456

Wickets: 5 or more – 29

Batting Ave: 1957/58, 1959/60, 1960/61, 1966/67

Batting Aggregate: 1960/61, 1966/67

Bowling Ave: 1963/64

Bowling Aggregate: 1953/54, 1954/55, 1955/56, 1956/57

Completed Hat Tricks: 3 times

Catches: 154

Club Champion: 1953/54 and 1966/67

Life Membership: 1966/67 (No. 11)

Kevin was selected to represent the club First Grade in 1953 at the age of seventeen. An outstanding left hand batsman, spin bowler (both off and leg spin) andfields-man he was instrumental in rebuilding the First Grade from this period to where it would play finals cricket for a number of decades.

Kevin was selected for WA during the 1957/58 season and played 10 First Class matches scoring 482 runs, one century (score of 102), one wicket and eight catches.

Kevin was appointed First Grade captain in 1963/64 and the club attained a final four position which it held until the 1965/66 season. His leadership and team work qualities were further demonstrated during the next great era for the club under the captaincy of Tony Mann, when the First Grade made the finals in seven of the eight seasons until his retirement in 1974/75 season.

Kevin was instrumental in the two premierships attained in 1968/69 (Kevin scored 137 and 95) and in the 1969/70 final took 4/43 and 6/18 in the second innings to rout West Perth on the last day. In both Premiership seasons, Kevin topped the WACA and MGCC batting aggregates with scores of 898 and 805. He retired from club cricket after 21 years with the following First Grade statistics:

Matches: 249

Runs: 7649 – Club Record

Centuries: 7

Wickets: 301

Wickets: 5 or more – 2

Batting Average: 1961/62, 1965/66

Batting Aggregate: 1957/58, 1959/60, 1961/62, 1965/66, 1968/69, 1969/70

Most catches in a season: 10 times

Catches: 195

Club Champion: 1959/60, 1961/62, 1968/69

Life Member: 1964/65 (No. 10)

During and after their careers, Keith and Kevin were coaches and mentors to a number of aspiring players helping them to attain their full potential. A number of players who represented juniors within the District attained their cricketing goals, representing the club’s First Grade with a number of players representing their State and progressing to International levels.

Both Keith and Kevin were instrumental with the success of The Lilac Hill Festival Match for two decades. Their outstanding work in the organisation, logistics and community support ensured the long-time success of this event, which benefitted club facilities and equipment for player development, building relationships with key stakeholders from the City of Swan, WACA, Cricket Australia and ICC affiliated International teams. The tourism benefits to the Swan Valley region were acknowledged at the WA Tourism Awards 2000 when the Lilac Hill Festival Match was awarded the ‘Significant Regional Festival and Special Event’ category.

Keith and Kevin contribution to the game has been previously acknowledged by Lord Taverners WA who have separately bestowed the honour ‘Vintage Cricket of the Year’ on them both.

The President of the Midland Guildford Cricket Club Mr Peter Volk said Tonight is a result of a stakeholders meeting held back in May 2012 at Lilac were our new 3 year Strategic Plan was created with the help of Mr Jeff Thorne

This plan developed a new core purpose:

To provide young cricketers in the greater Midland region, the opportunity to play cricket at the highest possible level and to experience success doing so

It also made us well aware of what Midland Guildford Cricket Club values are and what they stand for.

M – Mateship

G – Good Sportsmanship

C – Competitive Spirit

C – Commitment

Quite simply you couldn’t go pass Keith and Kevin who are these values and might have invented them. Their footprint is enormous not just for Midland Guildford but for cricket in general

We as a club are extremely grateful for their contribution over many years and instilling values within our club that will inspire future cricketer for many years to come.

Keith … Kevin you will always be the heart of Midland Guildfordand former club great and WACA President, Brian Rakich said “ There has never been a more dynamic duo in West Australian or indeed in Australian cricket than Keith Slater and Kevin Gartrell. They are indeed true legends of the Midland Guildford Cricket Club and West Australian cricket.”

Vern Pearce

Vice President

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