McDevitt returns with rep side needing a lift

Joe McDevitt says he is happy and a little surprised to be selected in the Illawarra squad for Sunday’s Kingsgrove Sports T20 clash against Mosman after only one innings in the local competition this season.

McDevitt joined Northern Districts last week and made a run-a-ball 67 in a win over Port after playing two matches for Western Suburbs in Sydney Grade.

 One of Illawarra’s rep captains last season, McDevitt said a four hour round trip to training with Wests was too much to commit to for a full season and with mates in the lower grades at the Butchers he made the switch from Corrimal.

The top order batsman made a half century in both his innings in the lower grades at Wests and though he was scratchy  against Port he’s glad to return to the Illawarra comp.  

‘’I didn’t give the rep team any thought, so I’m happy and bit surprised to be picked,’’ McDevitt said.

‘’I liked having a taste of Sydney. It’s more intense and a lot is expected. But with work I couldn’t sustain the trips to training.

‘’If I worked in Sydney it would be a lot easier but at the present time I’m enjoying be back here and I have mates at the Butchers in their lower grades.’’

 McDevitt is hoping to give his Illawarra teammates a lift on Sunday against Mosman at Allan Border Oval in the Kingsgrove Cup following Illawarra’s losses to Riverina, Southern ACT and Western in the Country Championships last weekend.

  Former South African spinner Johan Botha is part of a strong Mosman team, who beat Randwick Petersham in their opening match.

Botha has played five Test matches, 78 one-dayers and 40 Twenty20 Internationals for the Proteas.

Illawarra need to improve on their performance against Randwick Petersham - who posted 216 and won by 64 runs. Mosman have a double header on Sunday and take on Sydney (10am) before meeting Illawarra (2.30pm).

Illawarra have yet to win a rep game this season after being eliminated in Rd 1 by Central Coast in the Regional Bash, plus a loss to Randwick-Petersham in the Sydney dominated T20 comp.

 Illawarra’s only win in the Kingsgrove Cup was in their debut year in 2013 against Parramatta but they would love a strong showing ahead of hosting North Sydney and Manly Warringah at North Dalton Park on Sunday week.

Illawarra squad:  Adam Berwick, Nathan Loveday, Harindu Wanigaratne, Mitch Calder,  Dale Scifleet,  Tim Laws,  Jason Bunyan,  Chris McNamara,  Jason Ralston,  Joe McDevitt, Xavier McDevitt,  Oscar Oborn-Corby

Meanwhile, the two-day comp resumes in Illawarra cricket with premiers Balgownie needing to bounce back from a heavy defeat against Wollongong in the home clash with unbeaten leaders Dapto. In other games, Wests host Helensburgh, Uni welcome Keira, the Butchers and Wollongong meet at Hollymount Park and Corrimal host Port.

Ladder: Dapto 39, Helensburgh 29, Balgownie 22, Keira 22, Northern Districts 18, Corrimal 17, Wollongong 16, Uni 16, Port 13, Wests 12. 

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