Cricket coach tips state player to emerge from region

LUKE Knight believes the region will have another State women’s cricket representative in four years.

Gunnedah’s Kusiani Tuckerman about to unleash during Saturday’s CNZ trials in Tamworth. Photo: Geoff O’Neill 100514GOA01

Gunnedah’s Kusiani Tuckerman about to unleash during Saturday’s CNZ trials in Tamworth. Photo: Geoff O’Neill 100514GOA01

The Singleton-based Knight, head coach of the CNZ’s Cricket NSW Girls’ Academy program, made the bold statement at Saturday’s Central North Zone Under 15 and 18  trials at Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School.

“In four years’ time we’ll have one of these girls in the State squad,” Knight told The Leader and CNZ development manager Kathy Barber as they watched the under 18 contingent walk back up to the John Kilborn nets and join their younger triallists.

“It’s a big call,” Barber replied.

“But it is pretty exciting for us at both levels (Under 18 and 15) with all these girls trialling today.”

Two squads will be named later this week and they will have eight training sessions over winter at various venues such as Scone and Tamworth and maybe Quirindi or Gunnedah.

“We have a trip to Kempsey in late September to train and play games against North Coast and Newcastle,” Knight said.

“That is followed by the Country Championships on the October long weekend. We haven’t got a venue for that yet.

“So there’s plenty to work towards.”

He was delighted with the roll-up on Saturday.

“It’s about the same as last year,” Knight said.

“We do have four or five who couldn’t make it today as well.

“It’s always hard fitting in with all the other sports.”

He said some of the coaching sessions would have high- level coaches such as former Australian and NSW Breaker star Lisa Sthalaker and the Under 15 and 18 state coaches attend some of the training sessions.

The fact CNZ has four girls – Kareena Dawson (Armidale), Lara Graham (Nemingha), Alyssa Ford (Narrabri West) and Tamworth’s Jess Davidson – named to  play in the Australian primary schoolgirls’ championships in Darwin next month testify to that.

Davidson, Graham and Dawson will all play for NSW whilst Ford plays for an Invitational XI.

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