SCREAMER: Swifts fielder Senura Senarathne takes a super catch at second slip to dismiss Taipans batsman Andrew Doyle in their first divisin match at Redbank Plains.
SCREAMER: Swifts fielder Senura Senarathne takes a super catch at second slip to dismiss Taipans batsman Andrew Doyle in their first divisin match at Redbank Plains. Bruce Clayton

McCullum coup a master stroke

ONE of the big talking points that set tongues wagging this week was the selection of New Zealand run machine Brendon McCullum lining up for Ipswich Logan tomorrow.

This would have to be one of the biggest coups for Brisbane Grade cricket so far this millennium.

Rarely do current or former international players play grade cricket these days. Let alone, with a very successful ex-international captain, excitement machine and Brisbane Heat's marquee player.

This is a huge boost for the already high flying Hornets.

It is a pity the T20 games will be played in Brisbane and not in Ipswich.

The Hornets would have attracted a big crowd out to Baxter Oval tomorrow.

McCullum's matches will be played at Norths home ground, which is located at Kedron on Shaw Road if people are keen to travel down to see the action.

The QCA T20s started last Sunday.

Ipswich Logan defeated Valleys at Baxter Oval with the top order of Dan Wilson (42), Amila Weththasinghe (24), captain Anthony Wilson (28) and Nick De Giusti (26) all contributing to the total of 6/138 in 18 overs.

In reply, Valleys fell 14 runs short with Weththasinghe the pick of the bowlers with 2/15 off his four overs.

Unfortunately, the first game against University was washed out due to water remaining from Saturday's thunderstorm.

Meanwhile, on Marsden No.1, it also looked like a washout for the Wests/Valleys game. However, the match was played after the great work of groundsman Alan Donovan and willing assistants Mick Homburg and Chris Sabburg, along with Hornets supporters, staff and officials.

With that win and washout, the Hornets are in second place.

The Hornets take on Sandgate Redcliffe and Sunshine Coast at Buderim today and Norths and Toombul tomorrow.

Norths will have Test discard Joe Burns and former Brothers junior bowler Cameron Gannon.

The Hornets will be very confident after their recent performances.

Three wins over the weekend will secure them a semi-final spot.

Wood at nationals

BRENDON McCullum fills in the void left by all-rounder Harry Wood, who is currently playing at the national under 19 championships in Adelaide.

Wood made a run-a-ball 90 in Queensland's opening round victory against South Australia.

Wood followed that up with 27 and eight against Vic Metro and Cricket Australia's XI respectively.

'Sull' comeback

IT is terrific to see Adam O'Sullivan back and performing so well.

The former Western Suburbs first grader has started playing cricket again after a season off to recover after a few bad soccer injuries while playing for the Ipswich Knights.

It is great to see a person overcome such adversity and shine at the other end of that rough journey.

He has been in sublime form lately with a 79, 47 and 49 with the bat, along with many economical spells with the ball in hand to go with freakish fielding skills.

Top trio

ALEX Welsh, Luke Barrett and Ben O'Connell will play in next weekend's T20 challenge in Brisbane.

It involves the best country cricketers playing for South Queensland and North Queensland teams while taking on Brisbane's four best T20 teams in a two pool comp.

Welsh was the leading wicket-taker in the Ipswich association last season. He has scored a few 50s in an injury-hit season for Laidley.

Barrett is one of Ipswich's rising stars with two 50s for Centrals.

He scored 45 in Mackay in the recent state championship between North and South Queensland.

O'Connell is Ipswich's only representative in the Queensland Country team for the national championships at Wollongong in early January.

The stylish left-hander has started to hit form, after 52 not out for South Queensland and a solid 72 for Centrals against Thunder last weekend.

IWMCA T20s wrap

CENTRALS survived a huge scare in their latest game, defeating the plucky Fassifern Bushrangers.

Centrals all-rounder Adam O'Sullivan continued his great run of form with 48 off 37 balls as Centrals clawed their way to 7/107 after an early collapse of 3/24 thanks mainly to former Fassifern junior Sean Lutter (2/10 off 4 overs). Mick Abbott and Steve Ihle pushed the total over the 100 mark to give the Kookaburras' bowlers a target to defend.

Fassifern mustered a neat 7/100. They stumbled in the middle of their chase despite a final push from Lutter (16no) and captain Todd Rasmussen (22no).

Abbott delivered the match-turning spell of 3/11 while captain Ben O'Connell chipped in with 3/20. Centrals were the first team to secure a semi-final spot.

On Monday, Laidley District take on their current nemesis Northsiders.

A Blue Dog win would secure them a semi-final spot. The Tigers will not be without a shot at another upset after consecutive wins in the one and two- day formats. They will have Hornets Adam Smith, Issac Trigar and Amila Wethth- asinghe in their ranks.

If the Tigers win, it would be the first time ever that a Laidley team would have been defeated in all three formats in one season by another club.



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