Matthew Gale is unknown no more.
Matthew Gale is unknown no more.

Gale has chance to claim Heat spot

MATTHEW Gale's rapid rise to prominence continued last night when he was named as one of four players in contention for the last two spots on the Brisbane Heat roster and a $20,000 contract with the new KFC T20 Big Bash League team.

The former Victorian has been a strong performer in grade cricket with the Sunshine Coast Scorchers this season and earned a Queensland Second XI debut last week.

He is guaranteed a berth with the QAS for the Futures League Twenty20 tournament at the end of November, from which the Heat will select its last two players.

Gale took 2-20 off four overs yesterday for his team the Flames in the third and final round of the KFC T20 Challenge, the state-wide series aimed at giving opportunities to "unknowns" from all around Queensland.

Gale has come on to the radar in recent weeks, but was very much a prospective bolter when the series started.

"Yeah, I'm pretty happy about it," Gale said yesterday of his selection.

"I didn't have any expectations coming into the competition, even when I played in the Futures League during the week."

Gale's rivals for a Heat contract include all-rounder Graeme Skennar and batsman Steve Paulsen, who were both drafted into state cricket during the week.

The other man is a definite bolter - 31-year-old Toombul dynamo Marty Raadschelders.

The big-hitting right-hander had retired over summer, before being convinced by his wife to have a crack at the T20 Challenge.

The two contract winners will get to rub shoulders with stars Matthew Hayden, Daniel Vettori, Brendon McCullum and Ryan Harris when the season begins with a clash against the Sydney Sixers at the SCG on 16 December.



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