'Consistency is key' for Gympie's gun Aussie cricketer
CRICKET: He's battled hard to get his fitness right for the INAS Global Games, and now gun Gympie cricketer Brendan Westlake is enjoying every moment of playing for his country.
Taking the field through last week for a series of ODI preparation matches against England after South Africa pulled out of a planned tri series, the 23-year-old has found himself opening the bowling in the green and gold, despite dislocating his shoulder at the start of the year.
He managed to recover in time to cement his place in the Cricket Australia intellectual disability squad late last month, speaking of his aim to get back to bowling at his peak speeds around the 130km/h mark.
The Aussies had lost three straight ODI matches during the week, despite leading early in Game 3 proceedings on Friday.
Match reports suggested Westlake had been bowling "incredibly well” in those matches, if not for much reward.
"It's been great to get underway and get a feel of England ahead of the Global Games part of our tour. The ODI's have been a good hit-out and showed us where we're at,” he said.
"The best thing is that we're continuing to improve on the field.
"Personally, I've felt like I've been bowling pretty well. Consistency is the key for me, so just need to ensure I'm putting the ball in areas that will continuously challenge the batters.”
Westlake said he was "excited to get underway” in the Twenty20 matches starting between the two sides on Sunday.
Sunday's scorecard showed the all-rounder's efforts had been in vain in the first T20 as the Australians went down by a massive 95 runs.
Westlake finished with figures of 1/37 from his four overs, managing to remove English opener Jonathan Gale for 41 at Fehlberg Park, while also chipping in with a catch in the field.
He didn't have as much luck with the bat, reaching just 4 before he was caught off Kieron McKinney's bowling.