THE REAL THING IS HERE
Thursday 8 September 2011
Iâ€™ve heard that every end leads to a new beginning.
Well the Queensland Bulls 2011-12 preseason camp last week epitomised that saying word for word.
After a long winter of hard work, the squad enjoyed four days up at Maroochydore on the Sunshine Coast that signalled the end of the off-season and the start of the season proper.
While there was still a work out in the form of a well contested 3-day practice game, it was a terrific opportunity for the group to get away together to reflect on what weâ€™ve been doing and further plan for what is ahead.
The trial game was another pleasing hit out for the boys.
Despite a slightly soggy outfield, most batsmen enjoyed time in the middle and the even pitch that flattened as the game progressed.
Andrew Robinson, Joe Burns and Chris Lynn compiled some nice innings while the boys were treated to the dynamic hitting of Ben Cutting and Nick Buchanan in a second-innings 6-a-thon that left most of the spinners feeling dizzy.
Ali McDermott, Michael Neser, Cameron Gannon and Chris Swan all bowled with potency and our spinners had lengthy spells to work with.
The Sunshine Coast Scorchers and Maroochydore Cricket Club were magnificent hosts and ensured we had an excellent facility to train and play at.
Itâ€™s no wonder the Tasmanians make it an annual preseason venture to get away from the freezing nip of Hobart and Bellerive Oval to the A-grade set up of the Scorchers.
Off the field, coach Darren Lehmann ran through our diaries for the season, which outline what weâ€™re about.
We discussed our playing philosophy â€“ an aggressive and proactive approach to always move the game forward, akin to exactly how Boof successfully played the game â€“ as well as our different batting, bowling and fielding strategies and goals.
We also had newly-appointed chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns address the group.
Trevorâ€™s chat explained what the selectorsâ€™ roles entail and how they would go about doing it.
Without a doubt the boys found this to be very beneficial, as players can simply focus on their performance when they have a clear picture of the selection criteria and expectations.
The conclusion of the camp, an informal Q&A with past Queensland greats Carl Rackemann and Greg Ritchie, was the exclamation mark on an already top-notch trip.
Mocka and Fat Cat had the boys hanging on every word, with their hilarious tales of past triumphs, tragedies and tours, and their impassioned revelations of just what it means to them to play for Queensland.
With two of the Queensland Centurionâ€™s Club members offering up their ideas, it was well worth heeding any advice they imparted.
Fat Cat stood out to me.
While I was well aware of his witty side through his Mahatma Coat dialogue, I never knew just how fired up he was as a Queenslander.
He was easily as passionate a player as Iâ€™ve seen talking about the maroon cap.
It was a super night that got the blood pumping and only added to the growing itch that each player is already feeling â€“ letâ€™s get the season underway!