Horsham Cricket Association Country Week tournament starts

The Landmark-Carr McRae Horsham Cricket Association under-15 Country Week tournament starts on Monday in Horsham.

Seven teams will compete in the five-day tournament, with four 45-over group games being played ahead of the final at Horsham City Oval on Friday.

Horsham will take on Warrnambool Gold at Sunnyside today at 9.30am, before facing Portland and District tomorrow at Dudley Cornell Park.

The host will meet the second Warrnambool team, Warrnambool Blue, at city oval on Wednesday before having a bye on Thursday.

Horsham coach Steve Leith said his side was looking to be competitive over the course of the week.

"Our boys are fairly well-balanced," he said.

"We've got a really good batting line-up, a good bunch of guys and I think we'll be competitive."

Most of the players have turf-wicket experience.

Leith said he hoped the side would develop their cricket skills and improve against high-quality opposition.

"Especially at their age now, I hope they get a lot out of it playing more overs, working out what areas to bowl and how to build an innings," he said.

"Against better bowlers it will definitely be a challenge."

Leith said Horsham Saints all-rounder Dawson Cross would be a key for the Horsham side.

"Dawson is an opening batsman and opening bowler - he's also in the Western Waves squad," he said.

Cross will feature at the top of the order alongside fellow Saints batsmen Liam Atherton and Sam Leith.

Rup-Minyip's Corey Chenoweth and Saint Tom Wentworth are set to share the wicket-keeping duties, while Jung Tigers left-armer Tyler Puls will have a big role to play with the ball.

A Grade Tigers all-rounder Shannon Reddie will also be a key for the Horsham side, with Atherton and Blackheath-Dimboola's Trent McGough providing spin options.

Leith said he hoped the country week experience would help his players take the next step with their cricket.

"Probably most of them will step up into A Grade over the next two or three years," he said.

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