Young to join cricket greats

CASEY Young's family connection to Ricky Ponting will make his appearance in the cricketing legend's tribute game later this month even more special.

The 18-year-old state under-19 representative was yesterday named as one of two Tasmanians to take part in the Twenty20 match, with Ponting himself yesterday delivering the news.

Young's grandfather, Ian, was one of Ponting's mentors as he started his cricketing journey, playing a big role in helping him become Australia's greatest run-scorer.

``I have never really got to know Ricky personally, but I am good friends with his father and his mother [Graeme and Lorraine] and they have been great supporters for me and my family,'' Young said.

``I got a call from a restricted number, and obviously didn't know who it was, and I picked it up and it was Ricky Ponting on the other end, so I really had to pinch myself.''

The right-arm fast medium bowler and left-hand lower order batsman, who plays for South Launceston in the NTCA, said he didn't know what to expect at Aurora Stadium on January 30, in a game which will also feature such cricketers as Adam Gilchrist, Brett Lee and Michael Hussey.

``It will be nerve-racking and exciting at the same time,'' Young said.

``To be in the presence of Ricky will be a great honour, Adam Gilchrist has been one of my idols through my cricket career, so to play with or against him, or even just chat to him after the game will be a great thrill.''

 The second local product will be named today, and the final line-up  revealed on Thursday. A crowd of 15,000 is expected,  with more than 8000 tickets sold as of yesterday.

FAST FACTS

WHAT: Ricky Ponting tribute match.

WHERE: Aurora Stadium, Launceston.

WHEN: Thursday, January 30 from 7.15pm.

HOW MUCH: General admission $10 for adults and $2 for children aged 6 to 15. Seats $15 for adults and $7 for children aged 6 to 15.

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