Hard work pays off
HARD graft is a key part of any successful cricketer's armoury - and few embody that more than Jacob Wood, Stuart Frost and Lachlan Ford.
The Far North Coast trio will take their place alongside some of the state's most promising young players when they line up for North Coast at the Kookaburra Cup.
All three players earned their place in the Under-14 carnival at Taree starting today with an extensive off-season training and selection process.
The trio have also been busy in recent weeks as they aim to ensure their side goes well at the event.
"I have been training for a couple of days a week for about three or four weeks," Lachlan said.
"I was really happy to get picked and I am stoked to be going."
Eight teams from across regional NSW are taking part in the carnival, which aims to give talented players valuable competition experience.
There are two round-robin groups, with the group winners earning a place in the final on Thursday.
North Coast was due to start its campaign against Newcastle today, before further games against Southern and Central North over the next two days.
The regional side will be out to go one better than last year when it lost to Illawarra by six wickets in the final.
Off-spinner and batsman Jacob, paceman Stuart and quickie/middle-order bats-man Lachlan are among the Far North Coast's most promising juniors.
Lachlan, who attendsSt John's College, Wood-lawn, said he was eager for action to start in the 50-overs tournament.
"These carnivals are always good fun," the 14-year-old said.
"You get to face some of the best batsmen and bowl-ers from the state in your age group. Hopefully we will go well."
Michael Wood, who has coached the trio intermittently, said he was delighted with their achievements.
"They have put in plenty of other hard work in the off-season to achieve selection, including many early-morning sessions in winter before school," he said.
"These three have put their hand up for everything that Far North Coast regional director of coaching Paul Everingham has thrown at them. Selection is a real testament to their hard work and commitment."