Less than 12 months after representing Australian Country, Jon Nicoll has confirmed he’s stepped away from representative cricket.
Nicoll has led Wagga’s representative charge since returning home six years ago, but after struggling with injuries late last season the 31-year-old decided to call stumps.
“At the end of the day it’s one of those things and I’m getting older and other commitments take over,” Nicoll said.
“I’m still really passionate about playing club cricket but unfortunately there comes a time when you can’t commit to everything.
“I can spend a little bit more time at home and just the physical demands of playing that type of cricket year in, year out are really tough.”
At this stage Stribley Shield is the only representative cricket he’ll play with Wagga hosting Yass in the first round on Sunday.
He’ll also have a big role to play for Wagga City.
While Nicoll is a notable absentee, five Wagga cricketers have been selected in the Riverina side.
After taking part last year Bradyen Ambler and Nick Grant have been named again, Aaron Maxwell will make his first Riverina appearance since 2014 while Luke Gerhard and Lachie Skelly will make their debut this weekend.
After playing for Riverina under 21s, Gerhard was pleased to have been selected.
"When they gave me a ring and asked if I was available I said bloody oath,” Gerhard said.
It will be a good experience to meet some new blokes and play some good cricket.”
Riverina faces a tough task to earn a place against Central Coast in the final taking on powerhouse Newcastle at Berry Sports Complex on Friday, followed by ACT Southern Districts on Saturday.
They will meet Greater Illawarra on Sunday.
Gerhard will miss Sunday’s match with plans to return to Wagga on Saturday for an engagement party.
He expects it will be hard going for the side.
“I think it will be pretty tough,” he said.
“They have some quality players I know in Newcastle.
“In the 21s they were very handy so there will be some talent there.”