Name: Michael Falk
Place of Birth: Sydney
Favourite food: the Big Breakfast at Curly’s on the Corner, North Curl Curl.
Favourite music: Bruce Springsteen, and then more Bruce Springsteen. Then, for mellow, some Leonard Cohen.
Hobbies: I have small shares in a number of racehorses which is good fun. Also, golf and reading.
Secret talent: I’d love to say playing a musical instrument (piano or guitar preferably) but I’d be lying. Perhaps being able to do the SMH cryptic crossword.
Most annoying teammate: In the old days, our keeper Mick Cox couldn’t sit still and was a pest.
Best cricketing memory: Scoring 94 and taking 5 for in a 1st Grade game against St George who were always a strong side.
Something interesting about you that few people know: I enjoy watching Shakespeare plays. And I’m quite tall for my height.
How did your cricket career begin?: Under 11s at school, bowling left arm nudes (nothing much changed really over a long time).
Describe your cricketing journey: Through age teams to school 1sts. In the holidays, a couple of years of Green Shield, then Poidevin-Gray (about 6 or 7 years in PGs). Then just progressing up the Grades (played a 3rd Grade game in 1969) and playing 1st Grade from the early 70s to the mid 80s. A couple of games in the State Cup (a comp between City North, City West etc) and one season in the State squad. Retired, then came out briefly for 3rd and 4th Grade Premierships and a couple of years as 3rd Grade captain. Several overseas social tours (NZ a few times, Hong Kong, Around the World, England a few times) – great fun. And a few years with the mighty Rangers in the Gordon Junior Competition! A few other bits and pieces and the occasional lower grade game with Gordon.
Best moment with the Stags: Probably winning the Poidevin-Gray Comp way back with a number of guys who are still very good friends. We’d played Greenies together and then later went on and played Grade together. Most important thing about playing cricket (or any sport)? Mateship!
What are your strengths as a player? I suppose I was a fairly stubborn opening batsman and accurate bowler.
Who are your favourite cricketers? Why?: Ian Chappell was a fantastic fighter, a man for any situation. Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson were awesome. Derek Underwood from England was, in the right conditions, as unplayable as any bowler ever. These days, Steve Smith and Josh Hazlewood are great players. And Babar Azam – brilliant!
What is the funniest thing you’ve seen or heard on the cricket field?: Playing a 1st Grade game against Sydney Uni, we took what looked a fairly dubious LBW. The batsman walked all the way down the wicket (on the way to the pavilion) remonstrating that it had hit his bat first. The umpire then changed his mind and said, “Not Out!” Our captain, never short of a word, asked what brought on this change of heart, to which the umpire replied, “After consultation with the batsman, I deemed that it had hit the bat first!” After WHAT?!?!