Local cricketers have reportedly run out of excuses for poor fielding at Montmorency Park this season, as the oval prepares to enjoy the best conditions it’s provided in decades. With local cricket competitions resuming in recent weeks, players have been greeted with unusually pristine conditions, as suburban ovals haven’t been punished by a full winter of footy season thanks this year’s COVID restrictions.

One silver lining of the dark cloud COVID has cast over Melbourne this year is the condition of Montmorency Park, which made headlines back in May for being in the best condition it had ever been at that time of the year. And while the carpet-like surface was been welcomed by most cricketers, some have privately shared concerns over having one less excuse for misfielding ground balls.

Speaking on the strict condition of anonymity, one local cricketer said, “Most of the boys are wrapped about the conditions so far this year. I mean, let’s face it, playing on these flawless surfaces will be the closest that most of us get to playing on the MCG. But I’m actually a bit worried about it all to be honest. In the past, when you duffed a pickup in the outfield you could blame the ground, but there’ll be no such luxury this season. And I don’t like it.”