The local fields will soon be filled with people all dressed in white, as the Macleay Valley Cricket Association is in its final preparations ahead of the season commencing this Saturday October 13 for seniors and Saturday October 20 for juniors.
Ben Paix was recently elected as the new president of the association and he is looking forward to seeing the players step back on the field with their bats and warm up their shoulders before they send the ball down the track.
Paix confirmed there will be four teams contesting the first grade title with Rovers, Nulla, South West Rocks and Stuarts Point/Eungai fighting it out to lift the premiership at the end of summer.
Paix believes there’s plenty of talent spread out between the sides and is looking forward to watching the development of the junior players who push for starting spots in first grade.
“There’s a lot of junior cricketers who will be pushing to play in first grade,” Paix told the Argus.
“I think there will be a lot of younger players who will make the leap and move into playing first grade for their respective teams this year.
“We have a lot of talent in the Macleay and it will make for some great contests throughout the season.”
Paix is expecting a tight competition in the top grade and believes all four sides are capable of winning.
“I don’t think it will be a one-horse race,” Paix said.
“Rovers and Nulla are always strong but the South West Rocks and Stuarts Point/Eungai sides are looking very good this year.
“I can’t pick a winner but I think the South West Rocks team will be the dark horse this year, they have some great juniors and experienced players who know how to win games.”
The second grade has five sides competing for the title with two Nulla sides, a Rovers team, South West Rocks and Frederickton set to fight it out.
While in the third grade, four teams; two Rovers, one Nulla and a South West Rocks side, will battle for the premiership.
The first and second grade competitions will alternate between one-day and two-day contests throughout the season before the finals are scheduled as two-day matches.
Meanwhile the third grade competition will be one-day games for the entire season.
Rovers enter the season as the two-time defending champions of the first grade competition.
The side dethroned Nulla, who finished the season as minor premiers, in the grand final.
To kick off the 2018/19 first grade season, Nulla will face off with South West Rocks and Stuarts Point/Eungai will host Rovers.
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