Harwood not taking chances
By DAN MacDONALD
THEY are minor premiers, but complacenecy does not appear to be an issue at Harwood.
Captain Matt Peterie does not want his side to have to play a sudden-death match in a week's time so is revving his side up for its Lower Clarence Cricket Association major semi-final against finals series first-timers, the Woodford Island Warriors.
"We're looking good though," Peterie said.
"We'll be putting on our strongest side for the season."
That side includes Jason Hughes, who Peterie regards as the Clarence River's best wicket-keeper. Peterie said Hughes' leadership in the field was invaluable.
"We had 12 last week so we gave him (Hughes) a rest," Peterie said.
They have 12 players again today and Peterie said he enjoyed the luxury of having to choose a 12th man.
"It's a good situation to be in," he said.
At training on Thursday night, the Harwood players practised in the nets before running several fielding exercises.
"We have got to start better in the field," Peterie said. "Last week we dropped two catches in the first five overs. It took us until the first wicket before we got into gear."
Peterie said he wanted the team to post at least 140 on Barry Watts Oval today.
"That would be worth about 200 on most other grounds. But the Warriors have good bowling, well they have good batting as well, they showed that last time we played."
On that occasion Harwood lost by two runs, with Hughes top scoring on 15.
"We just want to get a good score and then set in to defend it."
Warriors skipper David Anderson said his side might need a bit of luck, but a run of wins had filled them with confidence. "They've got plenty of experience in their side with the likes of Ed Munday, but both sides are playing well," Anderson said.
He said he was unsure of what to do if the coin toss goes his way and said that whatever happened the Barry Watts Oval levelled the playing field.
"If our batsmen get set, they could do some damage."