Young Pottsville stars selected for State Challenge
TWO talented Pottsville cricketers have been selected to compete in the State Challenge in Northern NSW Country Sixers teams this weekend at the Dubbo development carnival.
From the Tweed region, Pottsville Cricket Club's Brodie McDowell will join Cudgen Cricket Club's Sam Weir in the under-14s team and Pottsville player Sam Acret will represent in the under-13s.
McDowell and Weir will play under the guidance of Anthony Kershler and Mitch Woods and Acret's set to be coached by Brett Carlyle and Barry Smith
David McDowell, Brodie's father, explained the young gun had been inspired by his brother to pick up the bat at nine years old and had been on the pitch in club cricket for the past five years.
This is his second time qualifying for the State Challenge after making the under-13 team last year.
"(The State Challenge) is the highest level they can play at this age," Mr McDowell explained.
"It's a development tournament, teaching them how to be good people when involved in that level of sport, and I think it's a very positive thing.
"The boys make a lot of friends, friends for life.
"Juniors in this area are developing really well."
The wicketkeeper normally plays in the under-16 Pottsville team as well as second grade in Far North Coast cricket.
The State Challenge team is normally selected from combined district teams in the Kookaburra Cup held in Albury however it was cancelled this year due to the fires.
"We are pretty proud, Brodie has done a lot of work and he has been working really hard at batting," Mr McDowell said.
"I think we also need to acknowledge another local player Nathan Pryke in the under-14s, he just missed out on the selection and I believe if the Kookaburra Cup hadn't been cancelled he would have been picked."
Michelle Acret, Sam's mother, explained the bowler was opening for his Northern NSW team at the carnival.
"His brother went through the Queensland representative pathways and Sam has gone the other way through NSW, because at the time NSW didn't have the development pathways they do now," she explained.
The right-hand bowler was selected for the State Challenge in the under-13s Country Youth Championships played in Maitland in October when he was in the Far North Coast team.
Acret was the leading wicket taker for the four days, taking 11 wickets for the carnival.
"I am really proud of him, look it's been really steep learning curve for him as he had just been playing for the local club and enjoying it," his mum said.
"He made it into the Far North Coast Cricket Academy and from that it has just been skyrocketing for him."
The local boys will join Far North Coast region's Harry Doherty, Brayden Kernaghan and Oliver Walker in the under-13s and Lennox Head's Max Ingram in the under-14s teams.