The packed winter program of elite cricket saw recognition for gun Dolphins’ all-rounder Michael Neser with his first international match.
Having been selected for the Prime Minister’s XI three years ago against Sri Lanka but failing to get on the field due to rain, this time there was no denying the 24 year-old’s place in an Australian cap.
Michael’s call up for Australia A in their four-day match against South Africa A at Tony Ireland Stadium in Townsville, was the first ‘A’ selection for a Dolphin since Andrew Symonds back in 1999.
However, the selection did cause a dilemma for his family given his South African birthplace. Having lived in Pretoria for the first 10 years of his life, Michael’s family moved to the Gold Coast where he played local junior cricket and came through the TSS program.
Michael had to dash back to Australia for the match after electing to play his first off-season in England league cricket for Todmorden.
During his time with the Lancashire League club, he was an outstanding performer and also set a new batting record for the club. That knock against Rawtenstall, saw him smash a sensational 191 that was only 10 runs short of setting a new league mark.
During the innings his explosive hitting saw four balls lost, and he faced just 92 balls and hit 23 fours and 13 sixes.
While untimely injuries may have stalled his progress in the Australian domestic ranks, being able to bowl 150km/h thunderbolts and hit them out of sight with the bat makes him a special player.