Simons chance to take on the best

By Adam Hicks

BANGALOW cricketer Simon Milenko will bat at No 4 and bowl at first change for Queensland in the Australian Under-19 championship in Tasmania starting today.

A good performance at the carnival could put Milenko in contention for the Australian squad for the Under-19 World Cup next year, but the young all-rounder is more focused on the immediate competition.

"I'm not thinking about that (World Cup) at this stage," he said.

"This is more about going down to play a good standard of cricket with a bunch of guys your own age.

"The standard is pretty high so I'd have to do pretty well to even have a chance of getting in (the Australian team).

"It's definitely an honour to play for Queensland and I'm really happy to be here.

Stronger team

"This is a chance to play against the best."

Milenko said three weeks of training had put the Queenslanders in good stead.

"It's a good, well-rounded side," he said.

"We have lots of bowlers and the batting line-up is pretty extended as well.

"From what they've told us, it's a bit stronger than what we've had in the past few years so hopefully we'll have a decent chance of winning or doing well."

Milenko won selection for the State after joining the Gold Coast club in the Brisbane competition.

"It has opened up a lot of things for me," he said.

"All the selectors and coaches are keeping an eye on you because it's in the city.

"I moved (from Lismore Eastern Districts) because I'm going to uni there next year and also because it's a stronger standard and I wanted to play for a bigger club in a stronger standard."

Milenko has played mostly second grade for Gold Coast.

But he earned his spot in the Queensland Under-19s after a stellar performance with the Gold Coast junior representative team.

In five matches for the Dolphins, Milenko scored two centuries 135 and 105 and also posted a 95.

At the end of this season, he will return to England for a second season with Hambledon, near Portsmouth, in club cricket.

After that he plans to start a degree at Bond University on the Gold Coast in September.

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