These pages are set here, for all comers, to chronicle the existence of the Waratahs Cricket Club which rose from dying embers, had many brief shining moments during the 1950's until influx of explosive talent in the 60's made it one of the dominant clubs as the 70's rose. Rising on a tide of young, home grown talent and experienced heads it became one of the dominant clubs of 1980's cricket in the NSW northern tablelands town of Armidale. Alas, it fell far quicker than it rose and the 1990's saw it haemorage playing and administrative talent until, exhausted by poor player numbers and with just a few strong souls to prop her up, the books were closed at the end of the 1999-2000 season, only shortly before its 50th birthday. No one noticed. A new merged identity tried hard to survive but two struggling clubs couldn't make one strong one. There was a brief flutter again in the mid naughties but this sleeping dog refused rise.
Waratahs remains alive, despite its burial, in the hearts of those who played for it. It is the hope that this will not just be an archive to be fondled as bodies fail and minds seek reasurance, nor that it become a cross check for interested grand children wondering if the words of a past President, AJ Bennett were true: "you don't ruin a good story with the facts." Therefore, its to be hoped that past players or their wives or their children might like to drop in and leave their stories so that columns of numbers are not the only things which make these names - many forgotten - memorable. Tell us those stories which have been shared often: sometimes at the bar or around a BBQ or sadly, when one of the names contained here-in has been put to rest and blokes have shuffled feet until the story telling started. Brief or long, please pass on their legacy.
Where possible, every effort has been made to be accurate but what we have here isn't set in stone and the site will always be open to correction and improvement. Enjoy your tour and make contact. After all, at its highest point, Waratahs was the best club in Armidale and the envy of all but Easts: along with Ex Services, our greatest rival and often our best friends. We weren't the best because we won premierships or because we had the best players, even though we had plenty of both. Waratahs was the best but because we understood we were family. You look after family.
This website is dedicated to Brian Joice, who along with Tom Cooke and Bill Thompson, produced the first written records of the Waratahs Cricket Club. As a man, he is larger than life. As a cricketer, he was a match winner. As a yarn spinner he had the happy knack of being at the centre of more stories than he told. As a mate, there has been none more loyal. As a Clubman, none more dedicated to the cause. There are many Brian Joice stories but my favourite sums the man. Upon hearing that his mate Harry was to be dropped, he told the then President, "if you drop H, you drop Joicey!" One of my warmest Waratahs memories was that time after each season but before presentation night in the years I edited the Yearbook. I'd visit Joicey, give him the new book and sometimes we'd have time for beer. This one's for you Brian.