IT will bring perhaps the biggest line-up of Australian cricket legends that Ipswich has ever seen, but Andy Bichel believes the Australian Cricketers Association’s Masters Regional Tour is all about the community.
Bichel is one of 13 former state and national players who’ll participate in the Ipswich leg of the 7th masters’ tour from October 3-5.
The cavalcade of stars will first take part in a sportsman’s night at the Metro Hotel Ipswich International on October 3, before travelling to the North Ipswich Reserve the following day for a coaching clinic and Twenty20 match versus an Ipswich XI.
According to Laidley-born Bichel who played 19 Tests and 67 One-Day Internationals for Australia the tour is a “shot in the arm for cricket”.
“The community gets a lot more out of it than any sporting team (that visits) these days. The guys are there to make a difference to the communities and promote cricket in regional centres,” he said.
“When was the last time Michael Bevan, Greg Blewett or Greg Matthews played in Ipswich?
“It would be nice to go back and meet some of those people who have supported me for so many years.”
The Twenty20 match could launch the career of a local youngster, with the Ipswich and West Moreton Cricket Association to select two young cricketers aged 15 to 18 in its side.
One will be awarded a scholarship, including $1000 and mentoring from one of the ACA greats.
“It’s not about performing in this match,” Bichel said.
“You look for that natural flair as well.”
The free u6-u16 coaching clinic will run from 9.30am to 11.30am.
Adult entry to the match which begins at noon is $5. Children under 16 enter free. Tickets can be purchased at the ground.
For information contact Sue Pigdon (0419 154 490) or Danny Mortison (3810 6242).ACA Squad: Andy Bichel, Michael Kasprowicz, Greg Ritchie, Craig McDermott, Michael Bevan, Phil Emery, Greg Matthews, Len Pascoe, Wayne Holdsworth, Greg Blewett, Greg Campbell, Corey Richards and Matthew Phelps.