'Go easy on me': Cricketing pro to play against Bundy
FORMER Australian player and coach Darren Lehmann has one message for the Bundaberg players he is about to face.
Go easy on him.
The former South Australian Redback, who has made the most runs in the Sheffield Shield in its history, will be in action for the Bulls Masters tomorrow night when they take on a Bundaberg Invitational XI.
But while Lehmann was one of the best to play the game for Australia, with 27 tests and 117 one day internationals to his name, he said his form currently isn't that flash.
"It's always good (to play), I've been a bit sceptical as I haven't picked up a bat in a few years,” he said.
"I'm looking forward to seeing and playing against the talent.
"But don't bowl fast to us old blokes.
"For us just some spin would be nice.”
Lehmann might have been born and raised in South Australia but he is quite happy to say he is an adopted Queenslander now.
Before he coached Australia from 2015 to last year, Lehmann was the coach of the Queensland Bulls and guided them to the 2011/12 Sheffield Shield title.
He also guided the Brisbane Heat to a title in 2012/13.
"I classify myself a bit as a Queenslander now,” he said.
"I've been here nine years, and I obviously coached the Bulls and that and also had an association with the Heat.”
Lehmann became involved in the Bulls Masters through his coaching of the state and said it was important regional areas were not neglected.
"Bulls Masters go all around Queensland and do a great job,” he said.
"Getting boys and girls into the game of cricket, that's what we love.
"We make sure we pass some knowledge and they can enjoy it and play it for years to come.”
The visit for Lehmann continues his break from coaching after resigning as coach of Australia last year.
He became the first Australian to coach and play in a World Cup winning team and also guided Australia to an Ashes win in 2017.
Lehmann firmly believes both can be won again by Australia when they are held in England later this year.
"When you put (David) Warner and (Steve) Smith back in I think they've got a real good chance of winning the World Cup,” he said.
"For me once you put those class players back in and we start to get some confidence under (Justin) Langer and (Aaron) Finchy in the world cup side I think we'll play okay.”
Lehmann's focus is on tomorrow night and making sure the Bulls Masters show why there were once considered among the best in the world.
But he said one player will probably dominate the night - Chris Lynn.
"Then you have Andrew Symonds who is still a superstar.
"It's a good day, hopefully we get a good crowd.”
The Bulls Masters will play Bundaberg tomorrow night at 6.30pm.
Tickets are available for $5 for adults with children under-16 getting in for free.