Bichel and his mates pumped for Masters

STAR players with a combined total of 147 Test matches between them have been picked to play for an Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) Masters match against a North Coast select team at Oakes Oval on October 2.

Although not officially part of Lismore’s Festival of Cricket, the Twenty20 match will provide the perfect end note for a series of top-quality games to be played throughout September.

Tasmania, Victoria and NSW will play a series of games in Lismore from September 22 to 30 and this Masters event in October will be the icing on the cake.

The ACA Masters team includes some cricketing legends such as Len Pascoe alongside more recently retired Test stars such as Greg Blewett and Andy Bichel.

Some other colourful characters include off-spinning all-rounder, turned SBS cricketing commentator, Greg Matthews, and Greg Ritchie, who was unkindly nicknamed ‘Fat Cat’ during his 30-Test playing career for Australia.

Pascoe is perhaps best remembered for taking 5-59 in the Centenary Test and featuring prominently in the World Series Cricket jingle ‘C’Mon Aussie, C’Mon’.

Other players to be named in the team to visit Lismore include fast bowler Wayne Holdsworth, NSW batsman Corey Richards, former NSW wicketkeeper Phil Emery, who played one Test for Australia, and former Tassie medium-pacer Greg Campbell.

Some other big name players are expected to be announced in the coming months, but Lismore’s most famous cricketing export, Adam Gilchrist, will not be among them.

But the side that has been announced so far includes players that should prove to be a major drawcard the region’s many cricket fans.

Blewett and Matthews top the list of players with the most Test match experience with 46 and 33 respectively.

Matthews claimed 61 scalps at Test level and scored 1849 runs including four centuries, while
Blewett racked up 2552 runs at an average of 34.02.

The players will be in town for several days and conduct a range of activities including junior coaching clinics and a sporting dinner at the Lismore Workers Club.

In addition, the North Coast team is expected to contain two of the region’s top junior players and one of these will be selected for a Masters’ scholarship.

Meanwhile, Pascoe and former Australian wicketkeeper Steve Rixon will be guest hosts in the corporate area at next month’s Festival of Cricket.

Three corporate packages have been tailored for local businesses including: bronze package valued at $1000, including 10 tickets to outer ground; four tickets to the corporate area and a four-man team on corporate golf day; silver package valued at $1250, including 20 tickets to outer ground; three tickets to corporate area for two games and a four-man team on corporate golf day; and, gold package valued at $1500 including 20 tickets to outer ground, three tickets to corporate area for three games and a four-man team on corporate golf day.

For more  phone John Bancroft on 6626 2003.

VICTORIAN captain Cameron White has been included in the Australian one-day squad for the remainder of the Ashes tour as well as the ICC Champions Trophy  and will therefore miss the Festival of Cricket in Lismore.


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