The absence of Cameron Milne, the competition's best batsman, from Kookaburras' lineup for this weekend's knockout semi-final against Court House at Wolseley Oval is "unfortunate" for 'Burras.
So says Court House veteran Sam Doubleday, who, nonetheless, says the reigning premiers will not take Kookaburras lightly.
Milne, who has scored 509 runs at an average of 50.9 this season (Stan Gaynor is next best with 376 runs), will miss the match for personal reasons. He is also Kookaburras' captain.
Doubleday said facing a Kookaburras side minus Milne was "not so much a relief" but it was "most definitely" an advantage for Court House, favourites to advance to the grand final next weekend against Albion and shoot for a third straight premiership.
"He has scored a bag of runs this year," Doubleday said, adding: "If you took Farran Lamb out of our side it would be a huge disadvantage to us.
"Every side has one or two good players that the team's sort of built around, and with Cameron not being here, it's unfortunate for Kookaburras.
"But I'm sure they'll have 11 other players who will step up and be ready to go."
Doubleday said Court House would be at near full strength for the match, with only Ben Haire missing.
Albion beat Court House outright in the last round to claim the minor premiership and advance straight to the grand final.
Doubleday said Court House were missing "four or five" regular first-graders on day one of the match, when Albion dominated. Albion also dominated on day two last Saturday.
Kookaburras, who downed Court House in round seven in early December, lost to Mornington last round but scraped into third spot on the ladder and the finals.
Milne is confident his teammates can overcome his absence this weekend. He said Kookaburras had beaten Court House this season and there was "no reason" preventing them from doing it again.
"We've been working all year towards it," he said. "They're good enough to knock off any side."