Oz cricket team doing country proud

By Kirra Livingstone

THE Australian intellectual disability cricket team will be heading to South Africa from November 8-20 to play in a tri-series against England and South Africa.

Maleny-based Australian intellectual disability cricket coach, Nathan Dodd, said the team are training hard in preparation for this cricket series to kick off the summer season.

“We did all get together for a training in Adelaide two weeks ago to go through all the logistical things, what we want to be doing, we’ve had a couple of practice matches and skills training sessions and handing out uniforms and all those sorts of things,” he said.

Coach Dodd said the squad had some new additions to strengthen the team, following their campaign at the Ashes last year.

“We’ve got a couple new players from Victoria coming on board this year, they are young, fit and athletic, and are excited to play for Australia for the first time,” he said.

“Now it’s just about integrating the new players strengths and skill sets into our past game plans which have been successful for us, we just have to tweak the plans a little bit with the new players tactics.”

He added that he believes the boys can play a high level of cricket, and that they have a good chance of winning the tri-series.

“We had some great progress against England last year and they are quite a strong team … we managed to win a couple of games against them, last year was the first time they beat England at the Ashes in five years,” he said.

“We are optimistic heading into the series, South Africa are a bit of an unknown though because they weren’t here last year as part of that tournament so they are always a little bit of a maverick.

“It’s been a great new mix this year and I’m looking forward to seeing the boys putting their best foot forward for their nation.”