Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Mon 21 Dec 2015



The Northern Territory news Mon 21 Dec 2015

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




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Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

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News Corp Australia

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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News Corp Australia



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34 SPORT MONDAY DECEMBER 21 2015 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 CHRIS Gayle was just five balls away from ditching the golden bat used in his Melbourne Renegades debut but achieved his aim of avoiding a golden duck. The king of bling said he failed to properly connect with any of the 16 balls he faced despite twice hitting Andrew Fekete over the rope in one over before departing for 23. Gayle will next target the Etihad Stadium crowd against Sydney Sixers on Wednesday night when he and Australian Twenty20 captain Aaron Finch hope to lead the Gades TOP-UP players being included in the Northern Territorys junior representative sides will continue indefinitely at future National Cricket Championships. Recent changes by Cricket Australia regarding age limits in National Championship competitions have resulted in a balance of talented NT junior cricketers along with the interstate supplementary players. The Territory took nine locals of the 13-player NT squad, with two apiece added from NSW and Victoria to the recent under 17s and under 19s National Championships. The move to include top-up players from other states drew frustration from some within the cricket fraternity who believed those spots should be for Territorians. NT Cricket chief executive Troy Watson said he would Top-up players here to stay in junior title bids like to send a team full of Territorians in the future but top-up players would continue. Watson told the NT News top-up players being included was successful on the field but understood it would be an emotive issue for Territorians. We have retained the right to control the team and to decide how many local players we take and how many supplementary players we need, Watson said. Hopefully it will breed some competition among our young guys and help them step up their cricket and working as hard as ever to represent the NT. I think the ratio we had this year was the lowest we would like to go. I would like to think with the increased focus on our pathway in the coming years, we should only be going up in the number of Territory players we use. Former SA Redback, Sydney Thunder and Adelaide Strikers cricketer Cam Borgas who coached the under-19s believes top-up players from other states are a must if the Territory is to become more competitive. Watson said the top-up players scheme would be reviewed every year. It is balancing act for us. I would like to think we got it pretty right this year, he said. We will have a major focus on helping out club coaches at an under-13s and 15s level to make sure that the numbers coming through are best prepared as possible for selection. We will continue to look to give the under-17s a great opportunity to go to a Bupa National Cricket Centre in Brisbane or have a series of games against a visiting team to put their best foot forward. We go through and make our selection and decide what areas we need a bit of strengthen in and this year for an example we needed a couple of quick bowlers in the under-19s. The Territory won two of eight games at the recent under-19s championships. JORDAN GERRANS Troy Watson Chris Gayle looks for runs against the Brisbane Heat for Melbourne Renegades at the Gabba. Picture: JONO SEARLE Gayle good as gold after willow worry to their best start since BBL02. Gayle, 36, said it was a bit scary opening the Gades successful run chase of 181 with a blade he had never even held in the nets and revealed he purposely got off the mark with a soft single. It was the first time (I used the gold bat), the master blaster told the NT News after the seven-wicket win at the Gabba. It was a bit scary at first. I said, OK, theres a lot of tension and a lot of eyes are going to be on you, Gayle. I hope you dont get a golden duck. After speaking in third person, Gayle erupted with laughter before admitting he required more work with his flashy new willow. Was it two sixes (I hit)? I didnt get much of it, I promise you. I was going to change the bat after the over, but I got out. Gayles teammates stunned at how heavy the bat is thought his first six appeared a shank, while his second gave the Jamaican yet another world record as the first man to crunch 600 Twenty20 sixes. Finch revealed Gayles intelligence was already helping the red team but in particular the attack. Hes been excellent, Finch said. For how destructive he is he doesnt get enough credit for how well planned and well prepared he is. He knows his opposition inside out and targets particular bowlers. Hes been awesome around the group (and given) a lot of advice for young guys in the squad, particularly the bowlers just with how he thinks as a batsman. After Heat captain Chris Lynn powerfully belted Guy Walker for 16 runs in three balls, Gayle had a word to the youngster and Lynn managed just two runs from his next three deliveries. Gayle then coolly bowled the following over, ensuring Walker (0-47) did not have to finish his spell. Finch who topscored with 65 (45) to anchor the win said opening with the most aggressive batsman in the world relieved the pressure on him after four seasons as the Gades kingpin. But what did Finch who became the first player to hit 1000 BBL runs make of Gayles gold stick? Its a bit different, isnt it?, he said. You always get a bit of flare from the Caribbean boys, they bring a lot of entertainment to the game (and) a lot of big smiles. SAM LANDSBERGER Adelaide can make sparks fly with bats REECE HOMFRAY Indians pick Cup winners WORLD Cup winners Yuvraj Singh and Ashish Nehra are set for comebacks to the Indian team after being named in the Twenty20 squad for Januarys tour of Australia. All-rounder Yuvraj, who battled cancer soon after helping India to the 50-over title in 2011, has not played internationally since the T20 World Cup final loss to Sri Lanka in April 2014. Fast bowler Nehra has been out even longer, last playing for India in 2011. Yuvraj and 36-year-old Nehra will be available for the three T20s in late January, though they were not included in the one-day squad which will play Australia in five matches beginning January 12. Yuvraj has always been special. The selectors are happy and captain (MS Dhoni) is happy to have him back, Indias chairman of selectors Sandeep Patil said. We will need experienced players in the T20 World Cup. The Australia tour (is the) perfect chance to give them a shot. Suresh Raina was a surprise exclusion from the ODI squad for the Australia tour. ALEX Ross says Adelaides batsmen didnt even scrape the surface of what theyre capable of on Friday night and will welcome the ball coming onto the bat at pace in Perth tonight. Fresh from opening their BBL campaign with a 19-run win over the Melbourne Stars at Adelaide Oval, the Strikers play defending champions the Perth Scorchers at the WACA. We played really well there last year and our batters like it with the pace of the ball, Ross said on the weekend. In the team meeting (on Friday night) we said weve got so much to improve (on) and we still came out on top and thats really exciting for us. The firepower weve got with the bat is still yet to really fire so we could set some big totals this Big Bash. Weve only been together for a week now but its going really well and weve got Perth who havent played a game so its nice to go in with a game under our belt. Ross belted seven fours and three sixes in his 65-run innings against the Stars on Friday night and with Kieron Pollard sidelined he would rival his teammates as the biggest hitter in the team. Michael Nesser, when he gets going, is very good and Hodgey, obviously everyone knows he can hit it, but weve got a lot of firepower the whole way through, with Simmons, Ludeman Heady hits a massive ball, Ross said.

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