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Masters to do battle at Deakin Reserve

Former Australian cricket greats will lock horns with a Cricket Shepparton team at Deakin Reserve next month.

PATRICK O'MEARA January 1, 2013 4:15am

Kyabram-raised Test cricketer Matthew Elliott has featured in ACA Masters’ tours before.


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Former Australian cricket greats will lock horns with a Cricket Shepparton team at Deakin Reserve next month.

The Australian Cricketers’ Association has selected Shepparton as the venue for one of its regional tours.

A squad of Australian international and domestic players will form a team to play a Cricket Shepparton side on Friday, February 22.

The match will be a Twenty20 clash and will be played under lights.

They will arrive in Shepparton a day earlier, with a function to be scheduled on the Thursday night.

The tours also include community initiatives and coaching clinics for juniors.

Cricket Shepparton president David D’Elia said the date had been locked in during a meeting with ACA and City of Greater Shepparton officials last month, but the finer details were still to be determined.

‘‘We had the initial discussion prior to Christmas, where we have locked down the date, and now it is a matter of getting all the other things organised,’’ D’Elia said.

‘‘The ACA will go away now and get the players locked in for it and we would expect to meet with them and know a little bit more by the middle of January.’’

Among the former Australian stars that have featured in previous tours are Darren Lehmann, Greg Blewett, Tom Moody, Brad Hogg, Jason Gillespie, Andy Bichel, Jimmy Maher, Kyabram-raised Matthew Elliott, Michael Kasprowicz, Greg Matthews and Rodney Hogg.

The ACA Masters visited Shepparton in 2009, playing under lights at Deakin Reserve, with the home side prevailing.

The Masters knocked 8-117, before Cricket Shepparton finished 4-120 with 15 balls to spare.

The Masters also visited Rochester last year, for an event dubbed ‘‘Water to Wickets’’, raising money for the flood-affected community.

D’Elia said how Cricket Shepparton would select its side was still to be discussed, with its representative squad to be unavailable due to Melbourne Country Week commitments.

The Friday will be the final day of the representative carnival.

He said the association was pleased the Masters had chosen to return to Shepparton.

‘‘We are very happy,’’ he said.

‘‘We had them here a few years back now, but they were very happy with us then and it is really a compliment to to council and Central Park-St Brendan’s that the facilities and the lights impressed them so much last time.

‘‘The lights were a big draw card, they rarely get to play under lights of such quality.’’

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