Stars align for Griffith ahead of SCG Country Shield


THE Griffith District Cricket Association has named a representative side bursting at the seams with talent and experience for Sunday's huge SCG Country Shield clash with the Murray Valley Colts.

All the big guns from the local first-grade competition have been named in a star-studded line-up featuring in-form quick Chris Mansell, powerful all-rounders Paul Plummer and Jarrod Cahill and NSW Country rep Connor Matheson.

It is the best team Griffith has selected in four seasons, according to skipper Marc Tucker, who said he was "pumped" about leading the side onto Exies Oval on Sunday.

"It's bloody good. I said it was the best side we've had in a while for the last game but I reckon this one's even better," he said.

"I definitely haven't played in a side like this for three or four years.

"Everyone's keen and available and in form, too, which is the most important thing."

Plummer and Cahill come into the Country Shield squad at the expense of Coro pacemen Alex Flood and Satvir Chahal, but Leagues Club batsman Jimmy Binks is unfortunate to miss out due to work commitments.

Matheson will make his Griffith rep comeback after recently going away to Sydney with the Country Under 17s while Yenda captain Shaun Stubbs secured his place thanks to two recent good knocks in the local competition.

"He's in form with a 60 and a 40 in the last couple of weeks and he was in the Creet Cup side on the weekend so he's due for a good run," Tucker said.

Tucker is blessed with nearly half the side capable enough - at least at district level - to call themselves genuine all-rounders, giving the skipper endless options with bat and ball.

"That's what we aimed for and that's why we picked an extra batsman, because we could afford to," he said.

"If we can bat first or bowl first we can give them a good rattle. We've got a pretty handy side for either."

Griffith's preparation has been near-flawless with strong home wins over Leeton in two SCG Country Shield and Creet Cup matches.

But the Murray Valley Colts loom as an incredible challenge given they beat reigning champions Albury-Wodonga Colts by 50 runs in the first round.

The Albury-Wodonga captain then tipped the Valley under 23s side to take out the entire competition.

Tucker, however, remains confident this Griffith outfit can spring an upset.

"We played both games really well, our top order fired in the Creet Cup and we obviously went really well in the first game as well," he said.

"I'm pretty happy with the preparation.

"I really am pumped. It'd be great to get plenty of old boys out there on the balcony and a good crowd behind us."

RECALLED: Leagues Club's Paul Plummer is one of the key ins for Griffith's star-studded SCG Country Shield side.

RECALLED: Leagues Club's Paul Plummer is one of the key ins for Griffith's star-studded SCG Country Shield side.


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