South Wagga's Joel Robinson and Brayden Ambler get taste of Albury competition

BUSY: South Wagga captain Joel Robinson is playing in Albury while he waits for the Wagga season to get started. Picture: Les Smith

BUSY: South Wagga captain Joel Robinson is playing in Albury while he waits for the Wagga season to get started. Picture: Les Smith

Tallangatta fielded two of Wagga’s top players in the opening round of the Cricket Albury Wodonga (CAW) competition.

Riverina captain Joel Robinson and rising teenager Brayden Ambler opened the batting in the Bushies’ two T20 matches.

“Our competition doesn’t start until November five due to the wet weather, so I was speaking to Bally (Tallangatta co-coach Trent Ball) about a few early games,” Robinson said.

Robinson played two seasons in the Border’s Charity Big Bash.

“It’s hard to gauge with a T20 the difference in standard between the competitions, but the number of imports is one thing that lifts Albury above Wagga.

“The top sides in Wagga, though, would be very competitive in Albury.”

Robinson made eight against Albury and 19 in the win over premier Belvoir.

Ambler also battled in the first match, but then posted 23.

“He has played first grade since he was 15, and was in the rep team last year,” Robinson said.

“He’s very sound technically, he just needs a little bit of fine-tuning, but he’s not too far away from having a breakout season.” 

Robinson will miss Saturday’s opening one-day round clash against St Patrick’s, before coming back against North Albury for his final game.

He indicated another top-liner could also play on the Border this week.

“It’s good to have our guys exposed to outside interests,” Tallangatta co-coach Matt Armstrong said.

“You can always take intel from those who play at a different level.

“The more outside influences, the better it is for the development of our players.”

Robinson is heavily ensconced at South Wagga, serving as captain and vice-president, while Ambler will also return after his four-match stint.

But the 28-year-old suggests other CAW clubs could target Wagga players, in the short-term at least.

“It’s so frustrating, we’ve been training for six weeks in the pre-season,” Robinson said.

“Given the delay, we’ll end up doing a 10-week pre-season, so at least we should hit the ground running.”

It’s only natural CAW outfits will look to target good players, particularly long-term, but Robinson suggests it’s a balancing act.

“You don’t want to disrupt what you’ve already got,” Robinson said.

Kooringal Colts’ coach David Bolton and Jono Nicoll, of Wagga City, are also considered among Wagga’s best players, Nicoll playing in Canberra last weekend.

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