Test toll for Armidale

ARMIDALE welcomes back one of its key batsmen but is missing two of its top order for Sunday’s War Veterans Cup clash with Tamworth at No 1 Oval, Tamworth.

While Matt Schaefer returns to the team after missing the Country Shield finals in Cowra opener Dean Moore and fellow top order bat Adam O’Sullivan are in Sydney at the Australia Sri Lanka Test.

Armidale skipper Andrew Brownlie said the two would be missed but is delighted to have Schaefer back while Scott Brennan also wins a call up.

“We’ve got a very similar side to the one we took to Cowra,” Brownlie said.

“Except Dean (Moore) and Sully, who are going down to the Test. Schaefer and Scott Brennan come in for them. Scotty has played a few games for us. It’s great to have Matty (Schaefer) back. He adds a lot to any side with his batting and bowling. He’s also an excellent fielder and a good leader.”

Schaefer was extremely disappointed to miss the Cowra Country Shield trip and would have made a difference. It would have been great to have had him but he had a family trip booked.”

Armidale bowled and fielded well in Cowra where it beat Nowra in a low-scoring semi final by three runs (98-95) on the Saturday and then lost to Albury Wodonga Colts in the Final 168-76.

“It was a classic weekend though,” Brownlie said.

“A great experience for the younger players like Will Frost and Michael Dawson. Our fielding and bowling was very good but we let ourselves down with our batting. 

“It was a pretty tough wicket the first day but on the Saturday we batted poorly. However it was a fantastic experience for us. I haven’t faced anyone quicker than the Nowra bowler. He was quick.

“It was a great trip, we all enjoyed it despite the disappointing finish.”

He’s hoping that camaraderie built up over the weekend transfers into Sunday’s clash against Tamworth.

Armidale (20) heads the WVC from Tamworth (15), Gunnedah (14) and Narrabri (4). A win will guarantee a February 17 WVC Final berth.

ARMIDALE: Andrew Brownlie (capt), Michael Dawson, Matt Schaefer, Scott Brennan, Alex Frost, Will Frost, Brad Smith, Steve Butler, Luke Brown, Sam Uphill, Henry Cupitt, Karl Triebe.

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