Townsville Bulletin

BURTON FIRED UP FOR ACTION

- MATTHEW ELKERTON

MONSOONS all-rounder Mitch Burton has not faced a ball out in the middle this season.

But according to his teammates that means little heading into the Bulls Masters Country Challenge in Bundaberg.

Burton was the only player who missed the Mendi Tropical Big Bash to be named in the Monsoons line-up.

The all-rounder appears determined to repay the faith of the selectors if his work on the training wicket is anything to go by.

Fellow all-rounder and Bulls Masters debutant Lachie Ford felt the full wrath of Burton this week, but said it had only made him more excited for their tournament, which begins with a clash against the CQ Seamers this morning.

“Burton hit them unbelievab­ly well (in the nets). He didn’t play in the Big Bash but he hit them really well,” Ford said.

“I don’t think he has batted in either of (Sub Parks first two games) but it didn’t matter. He absolutely minced them in the nets. He didn’t miss the middle.

“It was a tough deck too, I thought I would throw one up for him first ball but he just whacked it straight back at me. He whacked it from the first ball, it will be exciting if he gets to the middle.”

Burton will be an exciting X-factor in the middle order for a Monsoons side that has been boosted this season by the inclusion of Australian Country duo Chris Stanger and Sam Lowry.

Ford is part of an exciting young trio who have also been handed an opportunit­y in the squad, along with Brothers opener Cooper Guest and firebrand Travis Busch.

While they might have been picked with the future in mind, Ford said the young trio were determined to not be in Bundaberg to make up the numbers.

“I think having guys like Coops and Travvie there takes a bit of pressure off someone like myself,” Ford said.

“Coops has absolutely earned his spot, he scored 50 on the weekend and was massive in the Big Bash and Travvie showed his stripes last year. Having three of us young blokes in there might liven it up a bit in the field.

“I hope we get a good crack. We have a really good batting side and a really good bowling attack, but if we get the opportunit­y, we will take it with both hands.”

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