Batsmen Tim Cruickshank and Scott Henry will debut for the RTA SpeedBlitz Blues in their first home BUPA Sheffield Shield match of the season against Victoria at the Sydney Cricket Ground starting on Tuesday 25 October at 11am.
With eleven New South Welshmen being in South Africa, and Phil Jaques (hip), Nathan Hauritz (shoulder) and Beau Casson unavailable,
the Cricket NSW selectors have been forced into a number of changes from the side that lost on first innings to South Australia.
Amongst these Stephen O’Keefe will become the 113th captain of New South Wales, when he leads the side for the first time in the Sheffield Shield. He takes over from Ben Rohrer who captained the team against South Australia.
With Khawaja and Hughes dropping out of the team, debuts will be given to Manly batsman Tim Cruickshank and Sydney University top-order player Scott Henry.
Cruickshank, has played one previous match for the RTA SpeedBlitz Blues, scoring 8 against Queensland at the Gabba’ in October 2010. The 29 year-old right hander, is an attacking stroke-player who scored 143 against Victoria in a 2nd X1 match at Hurstville Oval last week. Cruickshank also scored 942 runs at an average of 41 for Manly in First Grade last season, including a top score of 203.
He is also a member of the Sydney Thunder squad that will compete in the KFC T20 Big Bash League this season.
Henry, is rewarded for some superb form in Grade cricket. Last season the left-hander scored 916 First Grade runs for Sydney University at the healthy average of 43.6, including Man-of-the-Match awards for both the one-day, and two-day finals.
The 22 year-old Henry is also in form, scoring 62 and 61 against the Victorian 2nd X1 last week.
Josh Hazlewood also returns to First class action, with his last Sheffield Shield game for the RTA SpeedBlitz Blues having come in February, 2010.
Penrith left-arm swing bowler, and former RTA SpeedBlitz Blues rookie, Josh Lalor, is also added to the squad./p>
The squad is:
Stephen O’Keefe (Captain)
– The match will start at 11-00 am
– Tickets can be purchased at the gate
– A pool feed of highlights will go through Channel 10 (contact Owen Martin)
– Highlights, match reports, live scores and tweets can be found at www.cricketnsw.com