Maynard's loss is Queensland's gain
BEN Maynard heads to Darwin next week for the national schools under 15 cricket titles with a weight lifted from him.
Twenty-two kilograms to be precise.
Maynard earned his spot in the Queensland team with scores of 78, 49, 51 and 57 for Met West at state titles in December.
Since then he has lost 22kg, working tirelessly to be as fit as possible to represent his state.
"I was always a big boy," said Maynard, who has slimmed from 105kg to 83kg.
"But I really wanted to do well for Queensland so I had to get fit.
"I want to go further with my cricket, so you have to change something if you want different results."
Maynard's results, cricket-wise, were pretty impressive already.
He opened the batting for the IGS 1st XI this year despite being in just grade 10.
But Maynard, like any top sportsperson, recognised where he could improve and acted on it.
"I'm a lot lighter on my feet," the Eastern Heights resident and Central Districts junior cricketer said.
"And I can last a lot longer in innings before I get tired"
It meant running every day, starting at 1km then working his way up to 6km. He then added sprint sessions and has been almost impossible to prise from the nets whenever he has time.
That has meant school coach Aaron Moore and teammates lining up to bowl to him or provide throwdowns for hours.
One of those was Will Crook, who was also picked in the Queensland team but has succumbed to a back injury and is now unavailable.
An Australian under 16 team will be picked following the national carnival and Maynard would love to be in it.
Maynard batted at number four for Met West and will do the same for Queensland.
He considers his ability to play straight as his best attribute.
"I've just got to get through the early stages," he said of his planned approach in Darwin.
Moore has invested plenty of time into Maynard and for good reason.
He sees a player with the commitment, temperament and talent to succeed.
"He was always talented but his work ethic is fantastic," Moore said. "He puts away the bad ball and has a good temperament."
BEN Maynard is in the best shape of his short cricketing career thanks to a fitness regime that has seen him lose 22kg.
"I went for a 1km run, then I built it up to nearly 6km every day," Maynard said.
"Now I do that three times a week as well as sprint work, because you need to be quick off the mark batting. I've got a lot more energy. It's really helped in life as well, especially with all the stairs around school."