Ballina batsman Nathanael Scott on the drive during the match against Tintenbar-East Ballina at Kingsford Smith Park.
Ballina batsman Nathanael Scott on the drive during the match against Tintenbar-East Ballina at Kingsford Smith Park. Marc Stapelberg

Bear necessity

BALLINA Bears top-order batsman Nathanael Scott isn't losing any sleep over being the youngest player to take the field in the LJ Hooker League cricket final this weekend.

The 16-year-old has had a bumper season and would love nothing more than to deny the Casino Cavaliers a third-straight premiership in the two-day final at Fripp Oval, Ballina, tomorrow and Sunday.

Scott is the second-highest run-scorer for Bears this season, sitting just seven behind captain Sam Adams.

Bears advanced to the final after their semi-final against Tintenbar-East Ballina was washed out last weekend.

However, in an ominous warning for the Cavaliers, Scott believes his Ballina side is only just starting to realise its potential.

"We haven't lost a two-day game all season and our last game against Marist Brothers was probably our best," Scott said.

"Age doesn't worry me because I've been doing the job all season and started training with this team when I was 12.

"Jake (Hellyar) and Matt (Barber) play for Casino and they're only a year older than me anyway.

"A win would be the tip of the iceberg and a reward for all the hard work we've done this season."

Scott found himself moved up the order this year almost by accident.

He notched his first LJ Hooker League half-century in a two-day win against Tintenbar-East Ballina last November.

"The only reason I batted at three that day was because we had a few away," Scott said.

"It was my first season in the top-grade last year and I batted eight.

"We're pretty lucky - our 11 would probably be a seven at some other clubs."

Luke Hall finds himself down the order after struggling towards the end of the season.

"He is handy to have down the order and there is no reason why he can't hit the winning runs from there," Scott said.

Scott captained the North Coast Under-16s and was selected in the NSW Country Under-17 team this season.

"A win this weekend would be as big as that for me," he said. "Especially if I make a decent contribution."



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