After weather affected the first three weekends of cricket following the Christmas break, Cricket Shepparton’s players will have their fingers crossed tomorrow’s matches are spared the wrath of Mother Nature.
Only A and B-grade matches have been scheduled for the long weekend, but Haisman Shield stars especially will be itching to get a full day of play in as the pointy end of the season approaches.
Katandra captain Jedd Wright knows the forecast — which is sitting at 39°C — is out of his hands, but praised the association for sticking to its guns the past month.
‘‘It’s just how it is, you can’t do much about the weather,’’ he said.
‘‘I think it’s good that the league stuck to their policy of (calling games off at) 42°C, when you walked outside last Saturday you nearly fell down with the heat.
‘‘It’s better to not be playing in that, it is only a game after all.’’
The Eagles host Shepparton United at Katandra Recreation Reserve tomorrow, but the two sides have already taken matters into their own hands to avoid as much of the heat as possible.
‘‘I spoke to ‘Vids’ (Shepparton United captain Dwain Vidler) and our umpires and we’re going to have a 10.30am start,’’ Wright said.
‘‘It makes sense with no junior cricket on our ground in the morning to get it done as early as we can.’’
Katandra will have to defeat United without the help of English import Elliot Richardson and stalwart Andrew Riordan.
Richardson was originally not going to line up for the Eagles this season, but appeared in last round’s clash against Northerners and the club’s first Twenty20 match against Numurkah alongside brother Scott.
Elliot has since made his way home, but both brothers are already locked in for next season.
Riordan has not played cricket since November due to a foot injury, but is expected back in the next fortnight.
United has won one of its past two completed matches and will be looking for an upset victory in this fixture to boost the confidence of its young line-up.
Harry Tonks, Sam Nash and Ethan McLaren have toiled hard with the ball all season, taking 18 wickets between them to support Matt Barclay (15) and Rehan Bari (nine) well.