Billy's kid swings into Queensland contract
Queensland's reputation as the family state is growing with Craig McDermott's 16-year-old son Alister picking up a contract with the Bulls for 2008-09. Following another disappointing campaign, Queensland are looking at players still at school to fill their rookie spots, with the Beenleigh-Logan batsman Michael Johnson also expected to be named when the full squad is released next week.
Craig McDermott was selected for Queensland as a 17-year-old, earning the nickname 'Billy the Kid', and went on to a Test career of 291 wickets. His boy carries similar bowling characteristics and the instantly recognisable red hair.
"My wife Ann-Marie and I are very proud of him and all our family, but we have said to him that getting a contract is where the hard work really starts," Craig told the Courier Mail. "This is the first of a lot of steps he has to take to get where he wants to go."
Craig has helped his son, who plays with the Gold Coast club, with a couple of things, "but he has done most of the work himself". "He has a good action and is getting the most out of himself." Alister was named in the honorary Australian Under-17 side for 2007-08 along with Johnson, Queensland's Youth Player of the Year.
The father-and-son links at the Bulls are currently strong with Ryan Broad, the boy of the former batsman Wayne, Michael Buchanan, whose father John appeared in eight state games, and Ben Laughlin - his dad Trevor won three Test caps - representing the state over the past season. Nicholas Buchanan, Michael's brother, could add to the list if he continues to develop while Andrew Tazelaar, the offspinner, is the offspring of the bowling hero Dirk. The teenagers were part of the Queensland Under-17 team along with McDermott and Johnson.