Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Country campaign

Deni and district move to division two in Bendigo comp.

SHAUN CONNOR January 18, 2013 4:50am

The Deniliquin District Cricket Association has finalised a 13 man squad for the Bendigo Country Week carnival, starting next week.

The full squad is as follows: Brad Todd, Brodie Bennett (Juniors), Andrew Hogan, Brenton Loudon, Matt Robinson, Mitch O’Brien, Oliver Draffin, Tim Hillier, Anthony Bradley (RSL/West), Ben Holmes, Dean Edge (Hay), Lachlan Taylor-Nugent (Jerilderie) and Brodie Unwin (Mathoura).

Juniors allrounder Brad Todd and RSL/West batsman Tim Hillier will lead the team next week.

‘‘I’m happy with the side we’re taking, it’s obviously the best of the available players,’’ Todd said.

‘‘We have some good depth and should be pretty competitive.’’

In a blow for the side, Todd said Brenton Loudon and Anthony Bradley would only be available for the first two days of competition.

After finishing second in division three last season, the DDCA side has been elevated to division two for the 2013 carnival.

Todd said the step into division two would provide a tough challenge for his players.

‘‘It’ll be a lot more quality cricket but we’ll be playing on better grounds too which should be a good experience for the boys,’’ he said.

‘‘Instead of playing on country surfaces we’ll be playing on VFL quality ovals.’’

At his disposal Todd has five of the competition’s leading batsmen of 2012-13 in his top order in Dean Edge, Hillier, Lachlan Taylor-Nugent, Loudon and Andrew Hogan.

Add to this the experience of Bradley, Brodie Bennett and Todd himself and it forms a potent batting line-up.

Mathoura quick Brodie Unwin will take the new ball each match. He will open with Loudon for the first two days and then Matt Robinson after that.

Depending on the wickets, spinner Mitch O’Brien may also be called upon to play a vital role.

Oliver Draffin will don the wicket keeping gloves to start the competition, but Todd said Hogan and Edge may also mind the stumps at some stage.

The DDCA will have its final preparation training run this Sunday before heading off to Bendigo later that day.

Deniliquin’s Country Week campaign starts on Monday against Emu Valley at Strathfieldsaye.

Each match is a 50 over fixture and all sides can use 12 players per match.

DDCA’s Country Week Draw:

Monday, January 21: DDCA v Emu Valley at Strathfieldsaye.

Tuesday, January 22: DDCA v Portland at Kangaroo Flat.

Wednesday, January 23: DDCA v Swan Hill at Eaglehawk.

Thursday, January 24: DDCA v Grampians at Golden Square.

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