Tweed District captain Tait Burns, pictured batting for Cudgen, wants his batsmen to stand up against Casino tomorrow.
Tweed District captain Tait Burns, pictured batting for Cudgen, wants his batsmen to stand up against Casino tomorrow. Scott Powick

Skipper demands runs against foe

TWEED District representative captain Tait Burns wants his batsmen to step up and deliver a score above 250 in what he expects will be a fiery SCG Cup clash with Casino at Queen Elizabeth Park tomorrow.

In its opening game of the state-wide knockout competition a fortnight ago, Tweed was forced to rely on some lower-order heroics from tail-enders Brian Wirth and Chris Moase to get out of jail against Ballina.

Burns said the team could take confidence from the way it bowled and fielded at Ballina, but the batting needed improvement.

"Our batters need to stand up and post a score 250-plus," Burns said.

"We've beaten (Casino) the last two years in rep and we're going in quietly confident, but you can never count out such a strong team, with the quality players they have, like Sam Irvine."

Burns didn't mince his words when he talked about the rivalry between Tweed and Casino.

"There is a little extra spice in this one, because we hate them, and they hate us. It is going to be a pretty fiery contest."

The feud is long-running, but there was fuel added to the fire when Casino Cavaliers beat Cudgen Hornets in last season's LJ Hooker League grand final at Kingscliff.

The bulk of both teams is made up of players from those two LJ Hooker League teams.

Burns was mightily impressed with Wirth's performance against Ballina and said his form had continued at representative training last Sunday.

"He was unstoppable against Ballina," Burns said of Wirth's 69-run performance.

"I don't know where that came from. He has played a few times for us and has never looked that good.

"He has definitely worked hard on his batting."

Tweed has made consecutive finals in the SCG Cup and is primed to repeat the performance, But the stakes are high, because if it loses tomorrow representative cricket is all over for this season.

Tweed will play either Coffs Harbour or Manning River at Kingscliff should it beat Casino. The final of the competition is played on the hallowed turf of the SCG, with the winner crowned the best team in country New South Wales.

Another newcomer to the Tweed District team who has impressed Burns is Caleb Zeibell.

"He is only 15, can bowl at 130kmh, stands six foot two and can bat as well as anyone else in the competition," Burns said of his Cudgen teammate.

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