Australia news July 10, 2012

New South Wales name new-look squad


The substantial turnover of players at New South Wales has been completed, with seven new faces included in the state's list of contracted players for 2012-13. The Blues were hit hard by retirements and defections after last summer, with Phillip Hughes, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Hauritz and Timm van der Gugten all having headed interstate and Simon Katich, Phil Jaques, Beau Casson and Stuart Clark having all retired.

New South Wales have not imported any players to replace the group, instead promoting young men who had been on the fringes of the state side or rewarding strong club performers. Arguably the most exciting prospects among the inclusions are the batsman Kurtis Patterson, 19, who scored 157 on his Sheffield Shield debut last summer, and the fast bowler Josh Lalor, 24, who made a good start to his first-class career last season.

The opening batsmen Tim Cruickshank, 30, and Scott Henry, 23, have been handed deals as the Blues search for a new top-order combination having lost three openers - Hughes, Katich and Jaques. The North Sydney batsman Daniel Hughes has earned his first contract, as has the fast bowler Chris Tremain, 20, who made his debut for the Blues last season.

There was also a contract for the wicketkeeper-batsman David Dawson, 30, who played 23 first-class matches for Tasmania over a five-year period before moving to New South Wales. He played one Sheffield Shield game for the Blues late last summer and impressed the selectors as the leading run scorer in Sydney grade cricket.

The allrounder Sean Abbott was upgraded from a rookie contract to a full deal, while new rookies included Harry Conway and Gurinder Sandhu. The fast bowler Burt Cockley, who was part of Australia's ODI squad in India in 2009 but has not played for New South Wales since November of that year due to injuries, has not been given a contract and is playing grade cricket in Darwin in an effort to revive his career.

David Gilbert, the Cricket New South Wales chief executive, said: "While it will always be a challenge to replace cricketers with Test match experience, the New South Wales SpeedBlitz Blues still have a core group of players who have experienced success in domestic cricket, and many of them have represented Australia in their careers to date.

"There are several new names in our squad this summer, all of whom have been selected due to their impressive performances in both grade and second XI cricket. There are excellent opportunities on offer for the season ahead."

New South Wales squad Sean Abbott, Doug Bollinger, Michael Clarke (Cricket Australia contract), Trent Copeland, Tim Cruickshank, Pat Cummins (CA), David Dawson, Brad Haddin (CA), Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Scott Henry, Daniel Hughes, Josh Lalor, Nic Maddinson, Peter Nevill, Steve O'Keefe, Kurtis Patterson, Ben Rohrer, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc (CA), Chris Tremain, Shane Watson (CA), David Warner (CA) Rookies Nic Bills, Luke Doran, Gurinder Sandhu, Harry Conway, Adam Zampa.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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  • Dummy4 on July 12, 2012, 7:34 GMT

    Steve smith my support is wd u !!

  • Roo on July 11, 2012, 5:21 GMT

    @straight_drive4... I think you are getting close to the money re:CNSW... I've commented a number of times on this - think you will find that management, coaches have created the current situation... But also with CA dropping so many NSW players from central contracts has put pressure on all - aka, the retirements & moving interstate - also the other States have better opportunities to offer more in regard to contracts/wages... Think Hughes has the best deal & will get less pressure getting settled into SA cricket than say Usie in Qld... Still of the opinion that Shield requires 2 more teams...

  • Martyn on July 10, 2012, 12:08 GMT

    Nathan Kiely - They're not counting Cowley, Doran and Sandhu who are on rookie contracts. Bowling attack better than England? I don't think so. NSW bowling attack is full of kids now. Do NSW really need 12 seamers and 4 spinners?

  • David on July 10, 2012, 11:41 GMT

    @GMFoley - sorry i also forgot to add that i dont think i am the only one who is thinking this way - ref to Meety comments and NSW always trying to uncover the next big thing. rightly or wrongly, something tells me they were pushed

  • David on July 10, 2012, 11:38 GMT

    @GMFoley - im not sure what you mean by "opportunities at the top of the order" - Hughes opens and khawaga bats 3. in addition to that - they have been certain starters in every talent stacked NSW team. they have been given every opportunity. i can understand guys like forrest and christian moving states to get an opportunity but these guys have been given everything. are they going to change states every time they are out of form? i dont think so. im not saying im right - but i just find it fishy that so many players have left all at once to "promote their careers". why havent other states had the mass exodus we have? something seems odd. it seems as though they have been pushed. i know its not a valid argument but for what it is worth - i know a former NSW player that has said quite a few of the players are unhappy with admin. im not basing my comments on that, im just throwing that in there for what its worth. IMO most of these players have been pushed out and i cant figure out why

  • Dummy4 on July 10, 2012, 8:40 GMT

    @msmith4280 Cruickshank, Dawson and Patterson all played matches for NSW last season and are thus not new at all. This young NSW side does look exciting though. Look forward to seeing some of these young guys step up.

  • Sagir on July 10, 2012, 8:31 GMT

    @Jonesy >> if only the national team was doing better in England.. i was hoping it would be a better contest with Aussies having the upper hand.. i am quite disappointed that it hasnt been the case.. off to watch Aus-Eng at Old Trafford today and hoping the rain holds off for the game.. and also hoping that i get to see an Aussie win !!! it is about time they did so..

  • Allan on July 10, 2012, 7:20 GMT

    We will miss Khawaja, he was our best shield batsman, but hopefully he does well under boof and makes the Aussie team

  • Mark on July 10, 2012, 7:17 GMT

    It maybe time for the coach to leave as well?

  • Aswin on July 10, 2012, 6:02 GMT

    good to see nsw not importing players like the redbacks. Will give job security to blokes like Cruickshank and Dawson. Lallor is a good prospect, and so is patterson.

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