The original WCC “Moose”, Damien Nettle began playing senior cricket for the WCC in the 1986/87 season whilst still playing U16’s, tasting immediate success as he would win Premierships in both B Grade and U16’s that season to kick off a 21 season career as a regular player for the Echidnas.
Within a few years he established himself as a regular in A Grade and played through most of the club’s 90’s & early 00’s resurgence, winning a further B Grade Flag in 1997/98 (when he was returning late in the season from injury). His first of 4 A Grade Premierships came in 1993/94 when he was vice-captain but unfortunately missed the GF due to injury, however, he would go on to play in each of the 1999/00, 2002/03 & 2004/05 A Grade Premierships.
A genuine Allrounder who spent much of his career as both an opening bowler and an opening batter, Moose’s best seasons came around the turn of the century when he had 3 straight seasons with over 200 runs & 20 wickets in A Grade (239, 366 & 237 runs and 21, 27 & 25 wickets in the 1999/00-2001/02 seasons).
One of just six players in club history to have scored over 3,000 runs and taken more than 200 wickets, Moose is also one of just two players to have scored a Century in each of A, B & C Grade – the other, his uncle and club legend, Ken J. Nettle.
Moose played at least 201 matches for the Echidnas (he played in some seasons where records are missing for lower grades and therefore likely played closer to 220 matches) with the majority of his career (170 matches) being spent in A Grade where he scored 2,961 runs @ 18.39 including 2 centuries and 10 half-centuries and took 197 wickets @ 22.61 including 2 five wicket hauls. He also represented the Association in the Meyer Shield in several seasons.
All up, in senior cricket for the Echidnas Moose scored 3,475 runs (good for 16th most in WCC history) and took 240 wickets (10th most in WCC history). Interestingly, he may have only been the third best bowler in his family, with Brian “Sting” Nettle taking 457 career wickets and Steven “Sticks” Nettle, 398 wickets (in senior cricket; Sticks took another 49 wickets in juniors). Whilst he spent the majority of his career as an opening bat, Moose excelled when given the opportunity to bat at No. 3 or 4, averaging over 25 at both positions and scoring all 4 of his career centuries from those two positions in the order.
Involved behind the scenes for many years, Moose is an ex-President of not only the WCC but also the A&EHCA. He was awarded Life Membership in 2009 and was also the Blight Memorial Trophy recipient as Club Person of the Year for the 1995/96 season.
One of life’s greatest mysteries will always remain how Moose went from the strapping young man with a mop of dark hair seen in the second image attached to this post (from the B Grade 1997/98 Premiership) to the appalling looking shaved head and goatee combo seen just two years later for the 1999/00 A Grade Premiership (third image attached).