Nic Maddinson on verge of Sheffield Shield cricket return for NSW Blues

13/07/2019 Posted by admin

Shield return: Nic Maddinson is set to play for the Blues in Saturday’s clash with Tasmania. Photo: Adam McLean Nic Maddinson has been welcomed back into the Blues’ squad and is in line for a return to Sheffield Shield cricket this weekend when NSW plays Tasmania in Wollongong.
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Cricket NSW flew Maddinson back to Sydney on Thursday before the conclusion of the Blues’ Futures League game against Western in Perth, which ended early on the final day when the visitors were bowled out for 250 to conclude a heavy defeat.

The 25-year-old made scores of 38 and 18 in the match after meeting with Blues coach Trent Johnston last week to discuss his return to cricket, his first-innings effort coming from 41 balls as wickets crumbled around him.

It was the first cricket he’d played since the Sydney Sixers lost the Big Bash final to Perth last month, after which Maddinson opted to take time away from the sport for “personal reasons”.

He’ll be joined in the Blues squad by captain Moises Henriques, who returns to state duty after representing in the three-match T20 international series defeat to Sri Lanka.

A win over Tasmania will further cement the Blues in the top two of the Sheffield Shield, and quick bowler Trent Copeland said Maddinson’s return was a huge boost.

“It’s great to have him back and from all reports he played beautifully over in Perth in that first innings amongst some carnage, it’s going to put some pressure on our batting group in terms of who might miss out,” Copeland said.

“Any changes to our team are going to be positive with pressure from a guy who’s played Test cricket less than a couple of months ago.”

Maddinson played three Tests for this summer before he was dropped after managing just 27 runs. He then struggled in the Big Bash with the Sixers before his self-imposed ban from the sport.

Copeland played three Tests himself on a tour of Sri Lanka before returning to and receiving the dreaded phone call telling him he was out of the team.

“It’s a tough time no matter what the scenario is, no matter who’s contacted you or who hasn’t,” Copeland said.

“The pressures that go with being an n player, it’s our No.1 sport, it’s our livelihood during summer, everyone is thinking and talking and playing cricket.

“The difference for everyone is the scenario you came back to. I came back to state cricket playing one day and four-day cricket, Maddo [Maddinson] came back into playing T20 cricket which is sometimes a very fickle game.

“You can try and hit sixes in the first couple of overs and miss out a couple of times and its starts to get even bigger on you.

“It’s hard on Maddo and it’s hard on everyone but we’re all there for him. Maddo’s a great young fella, he’s got a lot of cricket in front of him and I’m sure he’s going to play more cricket for .

“Hopefully for the rest of this summer he dominates for us and we can get to that shield final.”

Johnston was also delighted to welcome Maddinson back into the team.

“I spoke to him in the middle of last week and he was in a pretty good place,” the coach said.

“The mail from [Cricket NSW state talent manager] David Freedman was he was very good around the [Futures League] group. He played very well in both his innings, even though he got starts and didn’t go on with it.

“A player of that quality, he’ll come back into the 12 and then it’ll just depend on how we set the team up whether we stick with the six batters or bring the extra batter in and go in a quick light.

“Happy for Maddo to be back in the right frame of mind to be playing first-class cricket again. He’s an outstanding talent and we’ve seen that time and time again over the last seven or eight years.”

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