ORANGE’S Nick Duffy and Charles Litchfield will be doing their best to help Western Zone continue its winning ways at the NSW Country Under 17s Championship.
The championships start tomorrow in Raymond Terrace and the Western Zone under 17s have already played four games in preparation.
“We’re undefeated. We’ve won two trophies,” Duffy said.
“We won the Brian Booth Shield and the Rod Hartas Trophy.”
The Western Zone team celebrated a win against the University of NSW under 16s and won the Brian Booth Shield when they downed the St George under 17s last month.
The team, coached by Orange’s Trent Colley, then lined up against open competition in this month’s Rod Hartas Trophy.
They scored a six-wicket win against Lithgow before scoring a seven-wicket victory over Gulgong in the final.
“We’ve got a lot of momentum going into the championships. Trent (Colley) has made the team more professional,” Duffy said.
So, what has made the young side so competitive this early in the season?
Judging by the Orange pair’s answers, their camaraderie might have something to do with it.
“Clearly spinners in the team are playing well,” Litchfield, an opening batsman, fired.
“We’ve got some really good opening batsmen,” Duffy, a spinner, returned before they both laughed.
Litchfield, 15, has been in outstanding form with the bat scoring an unbeaten 73 against Gulgong and last Sunday crunching a massive 130 for Mitchell in their under 16s win over Macquarie Valley.
Duffy, 16, has also been consistent.
“I took two wickets in each game of the Rod Hartas,” he explained.
“On the weekend (with the Mitchell 16s) I bowled reasonably well. I had a solid five overs and then one just let me down.”
Duffy did have one criticism of Litchfield’s game on Sunday.
“Charles dropped a sitter off me on Sunday,” he said as the batsman put his head in his hands.
The pair are looking forward to the three-day Country Championship.
Western will play one-day matches against Riverina on Friday and Central Coast on Saturday.
On Sunday they will play two Twenty20 matches, taking on Illawarra and Southern.
The two Orange players agreed Sunday’s Twenty20 games would be interesting as the side has only played one-day matches in preparation.
Litchfield could play for a second Country Championship this season as he’s still eligible for the under 16s Western Zone team.
The Under 17 Country Championships will be played from Friday to Sunday at Raymond Terrace.