Born in Sheppartion in country Victoria, Aiden Blizzard is one Sydney Thunder star who knows just how important bringing elite cricket to regional areas is.
That’s why he can’t wait to take to Wade Park in just over a week’s time, when the electric greens take on Hong Kong at Orange’s premier sporting facility.
He’s confirmed, 100 per cent, he’ll be bringing a certain Englishman with him as well.
English One-Day and Twenty20 skipper Eoin Morgan was slated as an all but definite starter weeks ago, but his appearance was always going to depend on when he arrived in Australia.
It’s confirmed now though, he’ll be here before the Hong Kong clash and as a result, will definitely be in the colour city.
“He’s a great player, a great leader and a great person. He can change the game in an over or two,” Blizzard said of the reverse-sweeping, Irish-born England skipper.
“He’s obviously done the job for the Thunder before so we’re really lucky he’s available for (the practice games and) the tournament, he’s definitely going to play a big role for us.
“[Taking games to the country is] very valubable for the game, we often talk about grassroots cricket and to get some elite players and teams into the country, that’s just as valuable as sending any money or regional development people out there.
“There’s a lot of country people playing elite sport all over Australia and all over the world, so giving back to the community is a big part of the Big Bash.”
Blizzard echoed Thunder general manager Nick Cummins’ sentiments from a fortnight ago, saying Hong Kong won’t be an easy prospect. He has the experience to know too.
“I’ve played against Hong Kong before in the lead up to the (Twenty20) Champions League,” Blizzard explained.
“They’re a very proud nation and I think they’re doing some really good things on the cricket front so it’s the ideal preparation for us to play against a competitive spirit bunch of people and it’s great to be doing that in Orange.”
The 32-year-old called on the Orange community to get behind their side, promising a family friendly atmosphere and a great night at Wade next week.
The Thunder take on Hong Kong next Sunday, December 11, in two T20 games – at 12.30pm and 4.30pm.