Declaring open season for cricket

PRESIDENT Les Bennett has declared a new era of parity in the Bundaberg Cricket Association as players prepare for this weekend's two-day cricket opener.

For the first time in half-a-decade Brothers will not go into the competition as unbackable favourites after failing to qualify for this month's Twenty20 final.

“Brothers have certainly been dominant, but I think that they have come back down a little bit and the other two teams have come up,” he said.

“It will be a very open competition this year.”

Country Wests appear to be the big movers this off-season.

After failing to make the Bundaberg Cricket Association finals last year, they caused the weekend's biggest upset by beating Brothers on Saturday and going on to beat Waves in the final.

And the side will only get better with the return of skipper Mat Fleming this weekend.

“A lot of our guys have been playing for six or seven years so they are comfortable with division one cricket now,” Fleming said.

Across the Waves will also be boosted by the return of captain Brendan Prossliner, who was ineligible for the Twenty20 final after missing the qualifier.

But last weekend was Twenty20 cricket and Fleming was not about to rule out Brothers for the season.

“It definitely showed the confidence we have taken from last season but (Brothers) will only get better,” he said.

The biggest test for the premiership hopefuls will come this weekend when two-day cricket returns.

Brothers' big guns will be set to fire after a disappointing Twenty20 tournament where David Boge openly called for his experienced players to lift their game.



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