Better fielding the aim for Lismore
By ADAM HICKS email@example.com THE Lismore District representative cricket team has spent the past fortnight refining its fielding technique in preparation for the Webb Shield clash with Beenleigh-Logan at Beenleigh tomorrow.
Lismore vice-captain and coach Dominic Marsh said the team had refocused after its second-round elimination from the SCG NSW Country Cup at the hands of Clarence River (Grafton).
"A lot of work has gone into fielding after our last start, which was a real disaster," Marsh said.
"From ball one it was just sloppy. Our ground fielding was poor, we dropped 10 catches, missed a stumping and it just went from bad to worse.
"It was one of those games where the harder we tried the worse it got.
"It was a game that was won and lost in the field ... but the sign of a good side is how we recover and respond to that disappointment."
The Webb Shield this season takes on new importance following Lismore being knockout out of the SCG Cup.
"The Webb Shield is usually about development; our main focus was the Country Cup, which we're now out of, unfortunately," Marsh said.
"We're now focused back on the Webb Shield to be as competitive as we can, so it's about bouncing back from that and putting in a good competitive performance.
"These teams have a lot stronger competitions to pull their players from but we're looking at getting as close as we can and in a one-day game you never know what can happen."
Lismore goes into the match needing a win to remain in the hunt to take the title.
"This is an important game as we have won one and lost one in this competition," Marsh said.
"It is a young side ... and we are trying to develop our representative players.
"Each season our goal is the Country Cup and to make the finals after Christmas, and we have to start focusing on that for next season.
"These games are an opportunity to build towards that. "A few of us won't be there next year so the onus is on the younger guys stepping up."
The match tomorrow marks the start of a big week for Marsh and Lismore team-mate Craig Attewell, who will back up for the Southern Cross University Twenty20 team at the Australian University Games.
The pair will travel to Sydney with fellow SCU Lismore representatives Geoff Hallmann, Jack Quig-ley, Michael Holt and James Forbes for the tournament, which starts on Monday.
A unique competition, the Uni games requires competitors to back up each day after copious amounts of partying.
"There is certainly an element of partying involved but there will be some serious cricket as well," Marsh said.
"It is the Australian University Games so there will be some serious cricketers down there that have come out of the Sydney grade competition.
"The selection criteria had a prerequisite on playing standards where you had to be at least playing in first grade or above, ideally looking at rep standard." The locals will be joined by players from Sydney and other SCU campuses.
The five-day competition runs until Friday at the University of NSW in Sydney, and SCU has a new batch of one-day shirts prepared for the team. They were presented to the players yesterday.