TRENT Colley’s NSW Country selection on Monday brought to an end a 12 month emotional roller coaster.
The Orange batsman was named in the NSW Country side after helping Western Zone to the NSW Country Championship title on Sunday.
“Obviously I’m pretty happy,” Colley said.
“It’s a rewarding thing for a good carnival and a good team performance.”
Twelve months ago Colley was a late call-up to the NSW Country side but he had to withdraw as the birth of his first child coincided with the Australian Country Championships.
Colley said his selection this year meant he achieved something he had dreamed of.
“Obviously it’s been a goal. It’s been a goal for a long time,” he said.
“The most pleasing aspect is we did well as a zone. If you perform for the team and do a good job, selections take care of themselves.”
The opening batsman played a key role in Western Zone’s unbeaten run at the Southern pool carnival in Wagga Wagga with knocks of 75 against Riverina, 53 against Southern and 25 against Illawarra.
On Sunday, his 65 helped Western to a two-wicket win over Central Coast in the championship final and earned Colley the man-of-the-match medal.
Colley’s family already has a history with the NSW Country side, which added to their excitement.
“My dad (Gary) represented Country in the 1970s,” Colley explained.
“We’re pretty excited about that as a family. They ride the waves with you. For him to play for Country and now myself is fantastic.”
Joining Colley in the NSW Country side will be Western Zone captain Pat Rosser (Parkes) as well as former Orange City player Josh Bennett.
Bennett represented Newcastle at the Northern pool carnival where his consistent pace bowling earned him a place in the NSW Country side.
When NSW Country contest January’s Australian Country Championships in Queensland, Colley said his focus will be on performing for the team.
“My goal probably won’t change. My role will be to bat where they want me to bat and make sure I do that role by sticking around and building partnerships,” he said.
He is also looking forward to joining forces with some familiar faces in the NSW side.
“I played with Graeme Batty at St George 10 years ago. I’ve also played in Sydney with Tim Laws,” Colley explained.
“I’m also keen to play with guys like Simon Moore and Andrew Maher who are very experienced. I’ll be looking at how those blokes approach cricket and have a bit of an education while I’m away. Then I can bring that back to Orange and Mitchell.”
The CBA Australian Country Cricket Championships will be held in Bundaberg from January 3-15 next year.
NSW Country are defending champions.
NSW COUNTRY: Graeme Batty (c - Illawarra), Cameron Belshaw (Southern), Josh Bennett (Newcastle), Mitchell Coombs (Central Coast), Trent Colley (Western), Pat Darwen (Newcastle), Brett Davies (Riverina), Tom Groth (wk - Central Northern), Tim Laws (Illawarra), Blair Lindsay (Central Coast), Andrew Maher (Newcastle), Simon Moore (Newcastle), Pat Rosser (Western). Coach: Glenn Rowlands (Central Coast). Manager: Ron Hancock (Newcastle).