The one-day and T20 competitions aim to make use of the dry season in the Top End
Kurtis Patterson and Lloyd Pope are among the players nominated to take part in the new Northern Territory Cricket 365 programme during the Australian winter.
The new venture, which will take place between June and August, aims to make use of the dry season in northern Australia at a time when it is not possible for players without international cricket or major domestic deals to travel overseas although the aim is to make it a long-term option.
The concept for the interstate cricketers is largely aimed at young and emerging players although it is also viewed as being an option for more senior players who want to keep playing during the traditional off-season in the rest of Australia or who are returning from injury.
Patterson is the only player with Test experience involved having played two matches against Sri Lanka in 2019 which included scoring a century in Canberra. Apart from one hundred against South Australia the 2020-21 season was a lean one for him as he averaged 21.29 in the Sheffield Shield.
The interstate players will combine with the Territory’s best players to form squads for the City Cyclones, Desert Blaze, Northern Tide and Southern Storm who will each take part in the Men’s Strike League one-day series (June 20-July 25) and T20 tournament (August 15-27). These four teams are also set to be joined by invitational teams in the T20 tournament during August.
Between the one-day and T20 tournaments there is also set to be a three-match one-day series between a Cricket Australia XI, comprising the state-nominated players, and the best players from the Northern Territory.
“We’re delighted to have the support of Cricket Australia and every state cricket association around the country to launch Cricket 365 in June,” NT Cricket CEO Joel Morrison said. “With a mix of Australian Test, state contracted and emerging young players signed up to play cricket across Darwin and Palmerston, the quality of cricket on display this dry season will be first class.
“It’s an exciting time to be involved in cricket in the Territory, especially for our local players, coaches and match officials who will have the unique opportunity to mix with some of Australia’s best cricketers in their own backyard.”
New South Wales have provided the largest group of players including Jack Edwards, who scored a century in the Marsh Cup final, and former Australia quick Chris Tremain who could not break into the NSW side in his first season with the state.
Pope, the South Australia legspinner, is joined by Redbacks first-team regulars Jake Weatherald and Henry Hunt.
“We have said, and continue to believe, that it is vitally important to find ways for players to continue their development in a competitive environment,” Cricket Australia’s national talent and pathways manager Graham Manou said
“With such a high calibre of players involved this year, we expect the benefits of Cricket 365 to be far-reaching and we hope it sets a platform for others to benefit in years to come.”
New South Wales Jack Edwards, Mickey Edwards, Mathew Gilkes, Ryan Hackney, Lachie Hearne, Hayden Kerr, Kurtis Patterson, Jason Sangha, Chris Tremain
Queensland Hugo Burdon, Corey Hunter, Josh Kann, Noah McFadyen
South Australia Isaac Conway, Max Hatzoglou, Isaac Higgins, Henry Hunt, Lloyd Pope, Jake Weatherald
Tasmania Jarrod Freeman, Keegan Oates, Jack White, Mac Wright
Victoria Dylan Brasher, Campbell Kellaway, Zac Sleeman, Callum Stow, Brodie Symons
Western Australia Sam Fanning, Brad Hope, Corey Rocchiccioli