The Camberwell Magpies Cricket Club is pleased to announce the awarding of Club Life Membership to Chris Thewlis.
'Cobba' was officially awarded his Life Membership of the Camberwell Magpies at last month's Annual General Meeting, in recognition of his outstanding service to the Club throughout his action-packed 12-year career at the Well.
Who would’ve thought the 15-year-old kid from Wangaratta that loved cricket bats, had blonde peroxide locks flowing everywhere and hadn’t been exposed to much city life when he first arrived at the club would etch out a 12-plus year playing career and be an integral part of the off-field social side of the club.
Chris joined the club at the start of the 2008-09 cricket season after being recruited from the Wangaratta Magpies Cricket Club in the Wangaratta and District Cricket Association. As he was too young, most Saturdays he was driven down to the game by his brother, Matt, who often filled in in the Fourths.
A young 'Pup' as he was known back in the day ahead of representing Victoria at Under 17 level
Filled with raw talent, he was soon well known around the club as a kid who loved thrashing the ball to all corners of the ground; none more so than his Round 6 match against Carlton in his first year at the club. In that match, Cobba entertained his teammates and the First XI players from the neighboring Princes Park No. 1 oval to a sparkling unbeaten century opening the batting in the Third XI.
Little to his teammates’ knowledge, young Chris had been spurred on by the promise of a date with an attractive lady if he made a 100. Sadly for Chris, the 24-year-old reneged on her offer of taking a 16-year-old boy on a date...
Chris debuted in the First XI (CMCC First XI representative #91) in the final match before Christmas in the 2009-10 season against Frankston-Peninsula after getting a late call up on the morning of the game. In line with his moderus operandi of making an immediate impact throughout his cricket career, his first touch of the ball was a direct hit run out in the first over of the game.
The white ball format of the game is where Chris has had some of his more memorable outings for the Magpies. He scored his maiden First XI hundred, a blistering 135 off 98 balls (including 9 x 4s and 8 x 6s), in a One-Day game against Melbourne University in 2016/17 against an attack that featured Australian international Fawad Ahmed. On numerous occasions, he has been the clear match winner in multiple T20 games when opening the batting. His fast starts would often swing the momentum of a match. Chris was a key component in the Club reaching successive First XI white ball finals in the First XI in 2015-16 and 2016-17.
An example of Cobba's explosive talents with the bat
To date he has played 180 matches for the club, 179 innings, 11 not out, amassing 4,857 runs at 28.91 with the highest score of 150. In his time with the club he has scored eight centuries and 24 fifties.
With the ball he has bowled 260.1 overs, 37 maidens, taking 36 wickets for 988 runs at 27.44.
For the Firsts, he has played 58 games, 59 innings, five not outs for 1172 runs at 21.70 with the highest score of 135. His occasional bowling in the ones has returned 67.5 overs, 8 maidens, 9 wickets for 256 at 28.44.
Chris’s tenure at Camberwell has taken on many guises. As with many players, his hairstyles have come and gone with mixed results. In particular, the memorable 'eat big, get big' campaign changed a tall skinny kid into the hulk of a man that we see today.
His ascension from Tom Rickarby’s deputy as end of season trip leader, to taking/losing control of said end of season trips, has been to the humour and enjoyment of so many.
Chris also launched his business Badger Cricket a few years back; at one stage supplying over half the club with cricket bats. If you ask him, we have never scored runs like we did that season.
Most of what Chris has done at the club involves him wanting the best for his teammates, whether it be an ear to listen to the out of form player, or the first to drown sorrows with, or the leader of the cheer squad when another player has performed well. He also is more than happy to shout a young penniless Uni student a drink.
His involvement in the cricket club has extended through to the social committee, where he has been involved in the last four seasons creating many fun-filled events.
Putting aside his enormous talent on the cricket field (I don’t think you’ll find another teammate that you want to do well) Camberwell has benefited from Chris as much as he has from the club. The club is proud to call 'Cobba' a life member, and everyone from the Camberwell Magpies family looks forward to many more match winning performances before he calls time on his playing career.