‘Pumped’ Jack's ideal traits for T20 furnace
IN the tradition of his country-bred predecessor Andy Bichel, Jack Wood always embraces a higher level challenge.
That's why Laidley's latest all-round talent is raring to step up for Brisbane Heat in the Big Bash League starting this week.
Although Bichel was more a weapon in one-day cricket, Wood has similar traits in his willingness to smash a six or snare a vital wicket.
The left-arm wrist spinner and powerful right-handed batsman may soon receive a chance on the BBL big stage.
He joins the Brisbane Heat squad flying to Canberra on Wednesday as a replacement player eager to fulfil whatever role the team needs.
"Pumped for the opportunity,'' Wood said, reflecting on the week ahead being with his Ipswich Hornets team at Baxter Oval on Sunday.
"Regardless if I get the chance to play or not, I think it will be a good learning curve anyway.''
However, the inkling in his eye suggested he wanted an opportunity to showcase his talents after receiving a Queensland Bulls contract earlier in the year.
"It's been an awesome year,'' the former Ipswich Grammar School student said.
"I've just got to keep working hard and keep improving.''
He is excited about the prospect of being in the high-powered BBL environment.
"For sure,'' he said. "I really enjoy the T20 game and I think it suits my game.''
Brisbane Heat's opening two games of BBL-10 are against the Melbourne Stars on Friday night and Sydney Thunder on Monday night. Both encounters are at Manuka Oval.
"We are basically there for a week and it will a bubble pretty much standard to what the (Sheffield) Shield bubble was when they were in Adelaide,'' Wood said.
Wood, 23, warmed up for a possible Big Bash League debut playing three T20 matches for the Ipswich Hornets over the weekend.
He smacked seven sixes and 10 fours in knocks of 77 against University, 59 against Valleys and seven in Sunday's match against Gold Coast at Baxter Oval.
Wood took 3/22 in the middle stage of this afternoon's match to give his side a chance of victory after narrow Saturday losses to University and Valleys.
However, a top order collapse left the Hornets quickly behind the required run rate chasing Gold Coast's 9/159.
An impressive innings of 87 by promoted batsman Lachlan Prince gave his team a late glimmer of hope. But he was bowled out in the 19th over needing 26 runs for victory.
Prince hit six sixes and six fours in a lone stand.
As Wood watched on having been dismissed batting at first drop, he was more upbeat about awaited him in Canberra.
"I got a few runs yesterday,'' he said. "It was just a shame we couldn't get a win.''
He enjoyed his three wicket haul today.
"The wicket was quite conducive to spin, which helped. That's always a bonus,'' he said.
Since receiving a Queensland Bulls contract, Wood has been focused on chasing his higher level cricketing dream.
He's been training five days a week with the Bulls since June.
Having international cricketer Mitch Swepson called into the Australian T20 side and Heat's star import Mujeeb Ur Rahman in isolation could enhance Wood's BBL chances this week.
However, Wood was happy to let the selectors do their job.
"Just soak it up and learn from all those guys who have done it before,'' he said.
"Hopefully I get an opportunity at some stage but then if I don't, I'll learn as much as I can off Swepo and those sort of guys.''
His early introduction to Heat coach Darren Lehmann has been positive.
"He seems a great fella, pretty laid-back and I'm getting along with him well,'' Wood said.
The Hornets talent appreciates the encouragement he has received, especially being the region's latest country cricketer to be recognised for Queensland teams.
"It's a pretty close-knit family Ipswich and Laidley,'' he said.
"There's been plenty of congratulations. It's been awesome.''
STATE OF PLAY
Qld Premier Grades T20 series
1st Grade Round 11: University 3/166 (18.3) - Bryn Llewellyn 1/40 (4), Adam Smith 2/34 (3.4), Sean Lutter 0/39 (4), Dylan McAteer 0/20 (3), Jack Wood 0/32 (4) defeated Ipswich Hornets 6/165 (20) - Jake Cross 11 (13), Dan Wilson 14 (12), Jack Wood 77 (50), Harry Wood 29 (22), Michael Topp 7 (7), Anthony Wilson 9(9), Lachlan Prince 11* (8).
Round 12: Valleys 7/171 (19.5) - Lachlan Pfeffer 10 (14); Adam Smith 1/21 (3.5), Bryn Llewellyn 2/46 (4), Sean Lutter 4/1/35/3, Dylan McAteer 0/29 (4), Jack Wood 0/39 (4)
defeated Ipswich Hornets 6/170 (20) - Dan Wilson 24 (23), Jake Cross 27 (24), Jack Wood 59 (35), Harry Wood 21 (20), Anthony Wilson 16 (8), Michael Topp 7 (6), Lachlan Prince 7* (2), Bryn Llewellyn 6* (2).
Round 13: Gold Coast 9/159 (Jack Wood 3/22, Bryn Llewellyn 3/24) def Ipswich Hornets 140 (Lachlan Prince 87).
2nd Grade: Round 11 - Ipswich Hornets 8/172 (20) - Harry Austin 16 (12), Nick De Giusti 42 (23), Noah Emerson 11 (14), Sam Anderson 51 (42), Will Trigar 33 (16) defeated University 8/159 (20) - Jem Ryan 2/30 (4), Jacob Waters 2/27 (4), Rowan Lutter 3/35 (4), Will Trigar 1/29 (4).
Round 12: Ipswich Hornets 9/165 (20) - Harry Austin 64 (45), Greg Carter 14 (10), Noah Emerson 41 (28), Jacob Anderson 18 (14) defeated Valleys 159 (19.3) - Jem Ryan 1/40 (4), Jacob Waters 4/22 (4), Rowan Lutter 3/26 (3.3), Noah Emerson 1/31 (4), Will Trigar 1/32 (4).
Round 13: Gold Coast 1/172 def Ipswich Hornets 8/149 (Rowan Lutter 35 not out).
Women's Cricket 1st Grade Round 16: Gold Coast 4/82 (14.4) - Ruth Johnston 1/5(2), Hannah Lehmann 2/0/6/3 defeated Ipswich Hornets 9/81(20) - Ruth Johnston 34 (28).
Round 17: Wests 0/139( 10.3) - Grace Harris 93* (38) defeated Ipswich Hornets 4/134 (20) - Ellie Johnston 52 (32), Hannah Freiberg 19 (33), Kira Holmes 21* (34), Ruth Johnston 30 (17).
Round 9: Ipswich Hornets 2/108 (16.3) - Lucy Neumann 24 (30), Arya Pal 50* (42), Trinity Doyle 17* (21) defeated Souths 4/107 (20) - Macy Hauser 1/29 (4), Sarah Walker 1/10 (3), Emily Titmarsh 1/17 (3).
Round 10: University 2/87(15.3) - Macy Hauser 1/11(3), Sarah Walker 1/16 (3) defeated Ipswich Hornets 4/86 (20) - Lucy Neumann 33* (55), Sarah Walker 13 (23), Imogene Fisk-Walsh 10 (15), Trinity Doyle 11* (17).