An unexpected thing happened at No.1 Oval last Saturday as Old Boys beat up City United: the spotlight moved from the Hazlewood brothers on to teenage quick Landan Price.
In a sharp spell, the 15-year-old charged in from the northern end of the ground late in the match, his long, dark fringe flopping about, and his effort rewarded when he bowled Tait Jordan.
The wicket saw him mobbed by his teammates, some old enough to be his father, who clearly appreciated his work.
Earlier, Josh Hazlewood, the Australian vice-captain playing for his childhood club in a one-off match, appeared to provide Price with some advice after one of the teen's overs.
Price was no doubt inspired by the Test paceman's presence at first slip. Hazlewood was not much older than Price when he left Tamworth for Sydney and found himself in the fast lane to stardom.
The emergence of Price this season - after he made his first-grade debut with a two-wicket haul in a round-one draw against South Tamworth in October - has provided Old Boys with added firepower for their major semi-final clash against City United at No.1 Oval this weekend.
It has been a breakout year for the year 10 Farrer student. He also made his nationals debut, playing for the ACT/NSW Country under-15 side, and was recently named in the Country Sixers side for the under-16 State Challenge in Campbelltown next month.
He opened the bowling in Tamworth's defeat of Narrabri in the Connolly Cup final at No.1 Oval last month.
His captain that day was Ben Middlebrook, who will lead Old Boys into battle on Saturday as the runaway minor premiers look to record their ninth straight win and progress to the grand final on March 30-31.
Middlebrook has used Price somewhat sparingly in the eight matches the teen has played this season, with him taking nine wickets at an average of 23.5 and a best of 3-24.
The return this week of right-arm quick Chris Coulton, and fast-bowling allrounder Aaron Hazlewood's devastating form (he has taken 24 wickets in his past two matches, including 9-18 against City last round) means Middlebrook will have ample strike power at his disposal against an out of form City side.
Middlebrook said of Price: "He's a good young prospect. You know, it will be interesting to see where he is in a few years. But at the moment he shows encouraging signs. So, there's plenty to work on with him, but he looks good."
Old Boys are overwhelming favourites to beat City United and move within one match of regaining the title they lost to South Tamworth last year after four seasons of dominance.
City, the one-time competition leaders, have lost four straight matches - their top order badly struggling. The City skipper, Brad Smith, has urged his players to stay positive. He has said it is now a "new competition" - "and we need to go into it with an optimistic attitude, a real positive attitude, if we're gonna contend for the title".