Kevin "Stainless" Steele
Kevin arrived in 1970 aged 30, from a little club, Richmond Central, which had absorbed his original North Richmond Methodists. It later became known that he played one game batting at Number 3 in the twos (got 36, against Blackburn, was berated by Kenny Rout for "batting 90 minutes and not playing one shot outside the 'V') then got homesick and returned to his old club.
Stainless spent the following year umpiring thinking he was too old to play in this competition, then re-started at Nuna in '72/73, as a bowler-who-batted, then as a batter-who-bowled. A 3rds captain was promoted or just departed, Kevin was appointed in his place (it's called "finding the correct level at which to function"). The following year Ray McBlane arrived from Richmond Central (bowled the very first ball of the new season in the twos at Silver Grove and had it hit over the square-leg fence by a Read) and in the next season Allan Jackson (same source) came.
After the move to Mahoney's Reserve (Ian Donaldson the first batsman to be dismissed there, as an U16) the pace seemed to quicken for the Club. Kids all around the area, open parklands wanting to be put to good use. Suddenly we had 6 Senior teams!!!!
Stainless spent most of the next few years playing alongside Besty, Harry, Glen Smith, Ross and Graeme Archbold, Bob and Peter Jenkin, often making the semis, rarely the final.
He was often Social Secretary (and the founder of the modern format of the N&N Raffle ….Doug Bisset's Reverse Raffle, in which last-out wins. It was downstairs at Mahoneys, and there were some "musical items" as well.) Kevin later served the Club as our representative on Mahoneys Reserve Committee of Management.
During the early 80s the Club had grown to 8 senior and 8 junior teams. Kev wondered where in the world could there be a larger Cricket Club in terms of teams fielded? It was partly a consequence of the time and of the location, but few clubs the world over might have bothered to commit the time, fund-raising grunt, and week-by-week effort to match the demand. It is to the eternal credit of the families of those 70’s/80’s that the Club achieved it's size, and then maintained it for so long. And all those "extras" who helped establish an environment that kept people interested and involved should also take a bow.
His highlights include:
The "unbeaten champions" first eleven premiership of 78-79 with Captain O'Sullivan, President Jenkin snr and Secretary Steele.The Fifths won it in the same year, Kev was captain, got his only ton ever in the Final itself. (176 n.o.)
There was a stream of Richmond Central players which came to play, so many, and so well performed, from such a little club, McBlanes, Jacksons, Mitchells, Torbitt, Kennedy. All of them played in (created) premiership teams for Nunawading, and were proud of having done so. Many of their sons followed.
The 1sts and 2nds double flag, at the topmost level in 83-84. The seconds finished at about 6pm on a Sunday (cliffhanger), and the Annual Dinner Dance began at 7pm. The room was "high" in more ways than one!
Finally, the ATTITUDE: Nunawading Cricket Club...it doesn't belong to US. We belong to IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Kev was made a Life Member in 1986.