Dave Noonan

Marist Brothers Ben Cooper's batting it out

AT AROUND 195cm - or 6 foot 5 inches in the old language - it is difficult to describe Ben Cooper as anybody's 'little' brother.

But the Marist Brothers batsman is following in the footsteps of emerging South Australian Redbacks star, and his older sibling, Tom Cooper.

The soon-to-be 17-year-old Ben is third on the Far North Coast LJ Hooker League batting averages this season, with 297 runs at 42.43.

Although personal glory was the last thing on his mind at the start of the season, now that he's near the top of the batting averages Cooper said he would like to stay there.

“After a few scores you do have a look at the averages, and even though I've worked hard to get there, I'd really like to stay near the top,” he said.

Cooper has happy memories of his highest score this season, which was 103 not out against Murwillumbah in the second round.

“It took me a while to get going, but usually once I get going, I stay going,” he said.

“I came in at number six and probably batted for an hour-and-a-half to two hours and formed some partnerships throughout it.”

Aside from copping the occasional sledge about his older brother from opposition players in the field, Cooper said there were many more positives about having a State cricketer in the family.

“I like having a brother playing at that level because it gives you something to look forward to and aim at,” he said.

“I've been down to a couple of carnivals with Cricket NSW and they've said they are looking at my game, but I have to keep performing and get my game right up there.”

Older brother Tom has been in blazing form for South Australia in the shortened form of the game, cracking 101 off 108 balls against his former State, New South Wales, in a one-day clash last month.

Not that Ben gets all that much advice from Tom on his occasional trips home to Corndale, near Lismore.

“Normally, when he comes home he does more family stuff and doesn't delve into cricket that much,” Cooper said.

The St John's College Woodlawn student hopes his efforts over the remainder of the season can help lift the ninth-placed Marist Brothers into semi-final calculations.

“We've been up and down, winning some, losing some and we have been searching for that consistency,” he said.

“Hopefully, we can put our hands up and finish off the season well.”

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