MENTAL health will be in sharp focus when Wonthaggi Club and Korumburra Cricket Club battle for the Dutchy Cup this Sunday, January 23.

The cup honours the late David Dutchman who played for both clubs.

He lost his battle with depression in 2015, a struggle he tackled privately.

As well as the Dutchy Cup match at Butch West Oval in Wonthaggi, a fundraising page has been established for Beyond Blue.
Club president Luke McGuirk is inspired by the work the organisation does and spoke of the motivation behind the game and the fundraising initiative.

“I chose to fundraise with Beyond Blue to help raise awareness of men’s mental health and, as the president of the Wonthaggi Club Cricket Club and a club player for over 25 years, I know how hard it can be for men to open up about their problems,” McGuirk said.

“I want to help spread the word that times do get tough for all of us and one of the best things you can do is talk about it with your mates.”

That’s something David didn’t do, leaving people stunned when he took his own life.

“He had a few underlying issues, obviously, and didn’t come forward with it, never spoke to anyone,” Club A Grade captain Scott Williams said.

He recalls the players having a drink with Dutchy after a 2015 Saturday match, saying, “he seemed himself”.

Yet, news of David’s passing came a couple of days later.

While the Dutchy Cup has been played previously, it takes on a new format this year, being the first time it will be played for competition points.
Previously, Club took on the Dutchy Allstars in a lopsided hit and giggle affair.

It’s now planned to hold the Dutchy Cup annually between Club and Korumburra, with the match to be played in the highest senior grade in which both clubs field a team.

David played his A Grade cricket at Korumburra, before bringing his talents to Wonthaggi where he provided leadership as B Grade captain.

The right-handed opening batsman and wicketkeeper coached at Korumburra from the mid-1990s and was one of the competition’s best and most respected players.

He played for Korumburra until 2008-09 when he spent a season representing Koo Wee Rup.

It wasn’t long before he moved to Club and became a force in B Grade.

Under his stewardship, Club won back-to-back B Grade grand finals in 2012-13 and 2013-14.

David brought more than leadership, averaging a stunning 100.11 with the willow in the 2012-13 season, winning Club’s Bernie Maloney award for Cricketer of the Year.

His batting prowess saw him consistently achieve strong season averages, and David made the Leongatha & District Cricket Association B Grade Team of the Year four times.

For all his cricketing achievements, he will be remembered most as a person: “He was a much-loved member of our club, a mentor to junior players and mates with everyone,” captain Williams said.

To make a donation in honour of Dutchy, visit fundraise.beyondblue.org.au/thedutchycup.

The round 9 A Grade Division 2 match for the Dutchy Cup starts at 12pm on January 23 at Butch West Oval, Wonthaggi.

If you need support, talk to a GP or health professional. Support services include: * SANE Australia on 1800 18 SANE (7263) or sane.org; Beyond Blue on 1300 22 46 36 or beyondblue.org.au; Lifeline on 13 11 14 or lifeline.org.au.