Your chance to meet Aussie cricket legends in Lismore
OVER toast, scrambled eggs and coffee, former Test and one-day international wicketkeeper, Phil Emery, gave local cricket fans a taste of the Baggy Blues match to be played later on today.
At the Lismore Workers Club on Thursday morning, Emery addressed an audience of keen cricket fans, including local coaches and officials along with senior and junior players about the importance of cricket and how they are aiming to raise awareness of rural mental health issues.
"As the Baggy Blues, we are today representing an alumni of past players and we are here to support of the Rural Adversity Mental Health Program," he said.
"We are doing a clinic this afternoon with some kids ahead of a game at Oakes Oval."
Emery said while the Baggy Blues started off as an opportunity for former players to get together and reminisce, it has now grown into something that can make a lasting difference to rural NSW.
"We are aiming to promote cricket in rural NSW," he said.
"More than 70 per cent of our NSW players are from the bush and we we want to give back to those areas, so we are delighted to be kicking off the the tour in Lismore today."
Emery said everyone was welcome to come along meet former Australian players including Jeff Thomson, Steve Rixon, Gavin Robertson, Wayne Mulherin, Len Pascoe, Phil Marks and Steve Small at the junior coaching clinic at Oakes Oval at 5pm.
He said some of the best upcoming Australian players will also be giving advice, including: Matt Nicholson (Australia, NSW, WA), Chris Green (Thunder BBL), Nick Bertus (Parramatta Captain & NSW transition squad) Jordan Gauci (NSW Rookie contracted player), Liam Hatcher (NSW contracted player) and Henry Thornton (NSW contracted player).
At the breakfast junior Alstonville player Sam Dayhew, 13, was there, bat in hand for one reason only.
Well prepared with felt-tip pen at the ready, Sam and his dad Guy, were there to meet former Test and World Series Cricker bowler Lenny Pascoe.
Pascoe, 68, who back in the day regularly tossed the ball towards the wickets in excess of 145kmph (90 mph), was only too pleased to sign the bat for his young fan.