Trust Bunbury Fringe to bring together the community’s love or arts and sports in the best way possible. In it’s premiere theatrical debut, Tim Marriott presented Jack’s Ashes early last week at the Tronox Theatre in a compelling, heartfelt and pleasantly humorous performance that packed a punch for audience members of all walks of life. Sharing an insight into the mental frailties of a professional sportsman, the one-man show is told amid a passionate coach’s team talk over the course of his cricket team’s innings. In the world of theatre, I’ve always held a flame to monologue performers and the way that a single person can not only remember so many lines on their own, but create a world with so much as (in Tim’s case) a table, chair and teammate’s guernsey. Over the course of an hour, retired cricket star Jack shared the ups and downs of his days gone by; how he journeyed from England to Australia to play professional cricket, met and later fell out with his wife and most notably, the impact of his former teammate and how his loyalty and courage continued to inspire him and in turn, allow him to inspire his own team. Admittedly not knowing a whole lot about cricket, I was a bit hesitant walking into this performance, but I am pleased to say the show was the perfect balance of entertainment and sporting references, offering a powerful insight into mental health that anyone, regardless of their background, can relate to. Without spoiling too much, it was the show’s surprise ending that really tugged at the heartstrings and tied the story together in an empowering and truly touching sentiment. Based on the knowing chuckles around me, I’m sure knowing a bit more about the sport would have only added to the performance’s already glowing reception. Originally created with support from Arts Council England and presented in partnership with Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers Association to and for current and retired professional cricketers, this show is a hilarious night out that leaves audiences heading home with an important message in their minds. I congratulate Tim on this clever and impactful performance and wish him the best of luck for the show’s forthcoming season at Adelaide Fringe in March.