Twenty20 matches will be a fixture in the 2017 Walter Taylor Shield for the first time in the competition’s history.
Nine of the state’s best U15 teams will descend on Armidale next week to contest the shield, including defending champions Penrith and 2015 winners Tamworth.
Year 10 Armidale High School Student Henry Sindel will lead the Armidale side this year and is optimistic about their chances.
“We’ve got a lot of talent in our team - players that have played at the highest level in NSW,” he said.
“Hopefully I get some good opportunities to lead the team to wins.”
It’s been 12 years since Armidale won the competition but the young skipper thinks he has the strategy to get the job done.
“It’s about having certain plans for certain batsman,” he said.
“Knowing batsman’s strengths and weaknesses in the field.
“And also targeting certain fielders when you're batting.”
Teams will play their usual 50 over matches but will also contest the shorter 20 over format, popularised by the Australian Big Bash league.
“It’s one of the most exciting forms of cricket to watch and it's also one of the ways that you can enter into higher levels,” Sindel said.
“So it's good to be able to have both formats.”
The all-rounder said he was looking forward to playing a local derby against Tamworth, but concedes as one of the favorites, they’ll be hard to beat.
“You always want to get one up on Tamworth if you can,” he said.
“They’ve got some good players down there but if you pull one of against them it’s always good.
Penrith, Manly, Lismore and Tamworth as likely to be the teams to beat.
But that won't stop the local lads giving it a good shake.
“We’ve just need to play to our strengths,” Sindel said.
The Armidale team is Henry Sindel ©, Nick Page, Cooper Johnson, Jordan King, Darcy McDermott, Hamish Biddle, Toby Smith, Cotter Litchfield, Benji Marshall, Ben Friend, Ben Murphy, Kieran Wicks, and Marley Lynch.
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