CRICKETERS at Ipswich Grammar School need not look any further for inspiration than Allan Border Field this week when three former IGS students line up in the Sheffield Shield clash between Queensland and NSW.
Nathan Reardon and Cameron Gannon have both been called up for the Bulls after injuries to James Hopes and Ben Cutting respectively while Australian Test player Shane Watson will play his first Shield game of the year for NSW.
It may be the first time three former IGS players have appeared in the same Shield match although the make-up of the final Bulls XI won't be known until match day.
Reardon's selection comes on the back of his incredible KFC T20 challenge innings at Deagon on Sunday.
The 27-year-old smashed an incredible 13 sixes on his way to 141 off 51 balls and hopes the breakout innings is a sign of things to come against the Blues.
"It's a great opportunity so hopefully I can score some runs and get a couple of wickets," Reardon said of his return to Shield cricket.
"Apart from that (T20) innings, I haven't had any really big scores this year but I feel as though I'm seeing it pretty well.
"It's going to be a big test against a full-strength NSW team."
Reardon said he would have to adjust his mindset from pure aggression to patience but he was keen to make the most of his limited four-day opportunities.
"Our job as fringe players in the Shield stuff is to come in and contribute," he said.
"We just have to believe that when the chance does come, we are good enough to be there and put pressure on those that are in the side Cam's been bowling well all pre-season so he'll be excited and I'm the same."
Reardon said the fact three Grammar boys would share the field in the same match said a lot about the strength of the school program.
"I've played a couple of games with Watto and a few with Ganno as well so it's good to see the three of us playing in the same game," he said. "There is definitely plenty of talent in Ipswich and IGS has a good program and I'm sure there will be more young cricketers take the step up to higher levels."
IGS cricket co-ordinator Aaron Moore agrees.
Moore said the trio set a great example for school students and more were sure to follow.
"We pride ourselves on the boys continuing with cricket after school," Moore said.
"Even just looking at how many old boys are playing grade cricket says a lot about the program.
"The boys are pretty busy with exams at the moment but I'm sure a few of them will try to get out to see the former Grammar boys go round."
GRAMMAR BOYS FLYING HIGH
Shane Watson; IGS 1994-1998, First XI 1997-1998.
Cricket captain and First XI captain 1998, A E Burrow Award for batsmanship in the First XI in 1998.
Scored 132 v Brisbane State High in 1998, 100 not out as captain of combined GPS First XI in 1998, highest score ever (193 not out) at the 1998 Queensland Schoolboys' Carnival.
Nathan Reardon; IGS 2001-2002, First XI 2001-2002
Won the A E Burrow Award for batsmanship in the First XI as a Year 11 student in 2001.
Cameron Gannon; IGS 2000-2006, First XI 2005-2006
Won the K Heiner Memorial Trophy for bowling in the First XI as a Year 11 student in 2005.
Took 5-25, including a hat-trick, against Toowoomba Grammar School in 2006.