Do it for Sandman – aka the Wily Fox.
That will be a rallying cry – a reference to veteran quick Troy Sands – that Gunnedah will take into their final-round War Veterans Cup clash against Inverell on Sunday, as they look to cement a home final spot and move a step closer to a long-overdue triumph in the venerable competition.
Gunnedah captain Mitchell Swain said winning the Cup would be a great reward for Sands and the other seasoned campaigners in the side, who have toiled for years with no joy. “Troy’s been playing for Gunnedah for years, a long time, and he’s never won one before,” Swain said.
“So blokes like that, I think it [winning the Cup] would mean the most to. I hope the young blokes – the juniors and that who are coming through – realise how rare it is to win these.
“I hope they appreciate that and really put their best foot forward.”
If undefeated Gunnedah beat Inverell at Varley Oval, they will host the February 24 final. But even if they lose, they will make the final.
Troy’s been playing for Gunnedah for years ... and he’s never won one before.Mitchell Swain
Gunnedah have a four-point lead over second-placed Tamworth, who have a final-round bye and thus get no points. Third-placed Narrabri are a further point adrift, and play fourth-placed Armidale away on Sunday. Armidale are 11 points behind Gunnedah.
A win is worth six points. A loss is worth one point. So if Gunnedah lose and Narrabri win, it would come down to who has the superior net run rate between the two teams. Gunnedah have a slightly better net run rate at present.
Gunnedah will be without opening bowler Ben Irwin, top-order batsman Brad Jenkinson and another batsman, Ben Haire, on Sunday (all will be away). In-form youngster Zac Clarke will make his War Veterans Cup debut. He has recently made two half-centuries and almost scored a third.