Captains are confident of a winning weekend
CRICKET: Queensland Cricket coach and talent specialist for the Central Queensland and Mackay-Whitsunday region Bruce Deem is confident more opportunities will open up for female cricketers.
The first North versus Central Infernos Championship is on in Townsville tomorrow and Sunday.
BITS and Queensland junior Ruby Strange will captain the Infernos in tomorrow's 35-over game at 10am followed by two T20 matches at 6pm today and 10am Sunday.
"It was a surprise when they asked me to be captain and it sure is a great honour," Strange said.
Deem said the weekend's championship was a pathway for females.
"This year, myself and a junior director for both regions looked at a list of females and sent out an invite to 20 females to see who could commit," he said.
There was no opportunity to have a trial match but Deem said the selectors knew what to expect from the players.
"We expect good things from Ruby and moving forward, we expect her to go even better," he said.
Strange will have elite company with former Australian Test and One Day International, Victorian Spirit and Queensland Fire player Louise Broadfoot as Central Infernos vice-captain.
"I haven't met Louise previously but am very excited to work alongside her for this carnival," Strange said.
"I'm hoping to gain lots of game awareness skills and knowledge from the girls and any little tips they have specifically for setting fields."
Strange's BITS clubmate Lily Storch is also in the Infernos team and Deem said she would offer the team plenty with her all-round skills.
A Queensland Country team will be selected at the end of this month and Deem said while this weekend's games are important, selection would not be solely based on tomorrow and Sunday.
"These games are just a part of the selection process but are not a be-all and end-all," he said.
"Last year's performances are also a part of the selection process."
Strange said she plays as much cricket as she can to get the best out of herself.
"I've been playing for BITS Colts this season however I travel to Brisbane whenever I can to play with the Wynnum-Manly women's team," she said.
"I have started off pretty average with the bat and ball but am hoping to improve this season on my one-percenters."
Meanwhile The Glen captain Sam Lowry will also lead the undefeated CQ Centurions in round's three and four of the Men's North Queensland Open Zone Championship.
Centurions play winless North Queensland tomorrow at 9.30am and then fellow unbeaten Far North Queensland on Sunday at 8.30am.
"Both games will be tough and NQ have a few big hitters and a good bowling attack as do FNQ," Lowry said.
A North Queensland team for each age-group will be announced after Sunday's final round.
These teams will play South Queensland in trial games so that Queensland Country sides can be selected.
Results can be followed on the MyCricket website.
OPENS: Luke Johnstone, Lachlan Hartley (wk), Sam Lowry (C), Joe McGahan (vc), Todd Harmsworth, Brent Hartley, David Heymer, Cameron Keene, Waqar Yunus, Harrison Rideout, George Stacey, Logan Whitfield
U21: Matt Hicks, Wyatt Thomson, Stian Koen, Finn Bongers, Josh Finlay (C), Matt Van Bael, Robert O'Keeffe, Dalton Bean, Duncan Head, Lachlan Fenton, Brody Bashford, Angus Dow
U18: Zane Robertson, Pat Chay (C), Jake Robertson, Jack Harris, Lachlan Ferry, Stevie Roser, Matt Perkins, Max Norris, Josh Lait, Adam Van Bael, Jackson Hagan, Kelly Murphy
Names in bold are players from The Glen, BITS and Yaralla Cricket Clubs