2016-17 Greater Northern Cup cricket season hits off

Mowbray will begin the defence of their 2015-16 Greater Northern Cup flag when they travel to play Wynyard in the second round of the competition on Saturday.

HIGH FIVES: Mowbray players celebrate a wicket in their Greater Northern Cup grand final victory over Riverside from last season.

HIGH FIVES: Mowbray players celebrate a wicket in their Greater Northern Cup grand final victory over Riverside from last season.

With round 1 abandoned due to wet grounds last weekend, all teams will be keen to get underway and enjoy time in the middle after a long pre-season.

The Eagles will field a virtually full-strength side minus Fletcher Seymour and Matthew Scolyer from last season plus Ric Considine who is unavailable this week.

“Our attack will consist of James Storay, Jerome Illingworth, Jarrod Freeman and a new player Travis Wallace who is a pretty tall, handy all-rounder bowling fast medium who is a good replacement for Fletcher,” Eagles captain John Le Fevre said.

Le Fevre said he expected Wynyard to have some batting power at the top of the order and a team suited to what should be dampish pitch conditions.

Launceston heads to Ulverstone to play with coach Andy Gower saying the Lions would be without Tom Bennett this week with 16-year-old leg-spinner James Curran debuting in first grade after returning from state under-17 duties.

All-rounders Lachie Newland and Fletcher Bennett will play their second games at the top level and middle-order batsmen Jack Schaeche will play his first game after being in Melbourne for the past two years.

“We will continue to promote youth within our group and many in the group have had another year under their belt and are in emerging Tigers squads and we're excited about what they can do this year,” Gower said.

Westbury hosts Burnie and captain Michael Lukic said the Shamrocks had a full list apart from Jonathon Chapman and Daniel Murfet who are not expected to be available until later this month.

“Hopefully we can get away this weekend and give players a chance to cement their spots in the A-grade side,” Lukic said.

“We played Burnie last year and didn’t turn in one of our better performances so one-day cricket is something we are looking to rectify and I am sure if we all perform and have 11 contributors on the day we will be very competitive.

“They had a good one-day series last year so it will be a tight match and we’re excited to come up against them and challenge ourselves early against a good coastal side.”

South Launceston will be without Mackenzie Barker and UK import Liam Johnson for their home clash against Devonport at the NTCA No.2 Ground.

Will Foster will slot into the batting middle order and Casey Young into the attack playing alongside brother Jackson in first grade for the first time.

Riverside will host Latrobe and Sheffield have the bye.

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