The southern zones play-offs in the McDonald’s Country Championships began in Shellharbour on Friday between Central Coast, Illawarra, ACT Southern and Riverina Zones.
The leading team after the three-day, 50 over tournament will meet Newcastle Zone in the final at Bowral’s Bradman Oval on November 26 after Newcastle dominated the Northern Zone play-offs last weekend.
A NSW Country team will then be selected to play in the Australian Country Championships to be held in Geraldton, Western Australia, during January.
Players to watch from the Central Coast include all-rounder Simon Keen, who was previously listed by the Sydney Thunder and Sydney Sixers.
Scott Burkinshaw is a raw-boned fast bowler and former NSW Country Representative who has previously been named in the Australian Country merit team
Chris Archer is a wily left arm spinner while Peter Gallichan is the current NSW Country Captain.
Illawarra has Graeme Batty, a former NSW Country Representative and Country Player of the Year who is back after a break away from the game.
Duncan Maddinson is the brother of NSW Blues batsman Nic Maddinson and Jarrod Collis is an ACT/NSW Country under age representative.
ACT Southern has three current NSW Country players, Ben Mitchell, a left arm orthodox spinner, and fast bowlers Cameron Suidgeest and Djali Bloomfield.
Riverina boasts Jon Nicoll, a current NSW Country top order batman, Haydn Pascoe, a talented allrounder from Griffith, Nick Grant , clever right hand bat, and experienced captain Joe Cooke who is also a classy batsman.
Round 1 —Friday 10 November 2017 (10.00am)
ACT Southern v Riverina at Howard Fowles Oval
Umpires: Graeme Glazebrook, Neil Smith
Illawarra v Central Coast at Gerry Emery Oval
Umpires: Ross McKim and Greg Jones
Round 2 — Saturday 11 November 2017 (10.00am)
Riverina v Central Coast at Cavalier Park
Umpires: Graeme Glazebrook, Greg Jones
ACT Southern v Illawarra at Keith Grey Oval
Umpires: Ross McKim and Neil Smith
Round 3 — Sunday 12 November 2017 (9.30am)
Illawarra v Riverina at Croome Road Oval
Umpires: Graeme Glazebrook, Ross McKim
Central Coast v ACT Southern at Geoff Shaw Oval
Umpires: Neil Smith and Greg Jones