Stockdale to lead Victoria Country

Skip: Ex Students allrounder Lee Stockdale will captain Victoria Country at the Australian Country Cricket Championships. File photograph





LATROBE Valley will be represented at the Australian Country Cricket Championships.

Ex Students allrounder, Lee Stockdale and Glengarry batsman, Nathan Freitag have been selected for Victoria Country.

Those selected for Vic Country play for the Victorian Country Cricket League at championships held annually.

This year, the championships are being held in Newcastle.

Stockdale, a Vic Country regular, will captain the side, continuing a post he has held previously.

Other Gippslander’s in the squad are Sale-Maffra’s Jack Rietschel, Nathan Whitford and Zac Hurley, who has been named an emergency.

Former Sale-Maffra cricketer Jack Wrigglesworth, now playing in Geelong, is also in the squad.

Wrigglesworth is the son of former first class cricketer Ian, who won the Ryder Medal as best player in Victorian Premier Cricket in 1996/97.

The senior Wrigglesworth has strong links to the area, and still visits the rolling hills of Thorpdale often, where he runs a few cattle.

Former Melbourne Renegades player Bryaden Stepien is also in the Vic Country squad.

Stepien has some connection to Gippsland, and filled in a few times for Sale Football-Netball Club reserves in recent years.

THE Victoria Country women’s squad has also been announced.

Another Wrigglesworth, Megen, has won selection, and will make her debut for the state.

Her selection is especially noteworthy, as she has chosen to stay local with home club Bundalaguah and not align herself with a Victorian Premier Club in Melbourne.

While playing Premier cricket is usually seen as essential in getting picked for Vic Country, Wrigglesworth has proven it can be done.

The result means the Vic Country women’s team now has a true ‘country’ player from Gippsland.

Latrobe Valley local and current Gippsland Cricket Region 7 Secretary, Kristen Webber has been pushing for ‘country’ girls to be included in the team, and has now seen this vision come to fruition.

Webber will manage the team, while well-known professional coach Keith Jansz will coach the side. Jansz has worked with many local players and clubs across Gippsland.

The championships will be held from January 3, 2024, in Newcastle.