Jones to bowl them over

Aiden BoyhamSound Telegraph
Rockingham-Mandurah's Craig Jones competed at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships in Alice Springs.
Camera IconRockingham-Mandurah's Craig Jones competed at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships in Alice Springs. Credit: Cricket Australia/Getty Images

Rockingham-Mandurah District Cricket Club’s Craig Jones is looking to cap off a big 12 months with more strong performances at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships (NICC).

Returning to the Indigenous cricket competition for his third year, Jones has been looking to outdo his stellar performance in the inaugural NICC last year where he achieved figures of 9-135.

He also proved able with the bat in WA’s win in their final match of the competition, coming together with Bevan Bennell for an 89-run partnership when the side was 7-92.

Since the conclusion of last year’s NICC, Jones has moved from the remote mining town of Tom Price to Perth to play for Rockingham-Mandurah and has been working hard to further hone his cricketing skills.

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“I moved down to Perth hoping to play first grade and I’m playing second grade at the moment, but that was a move I made after being here last year,” Jones said.

“The biggest challenge has probably been finding my feet: I had to find a job when I first moved down there so that was probably the hardest part.

“But other than that everyone was pretty welcoming at the club- I didn’t have any problems fitting in and I knew a lot of the fellas that were already there so it was pretty cruisy.”

One significant difference Jones noticed with the relocation was the significant focus on high-performance that permeates through the WACA system.

“I’m enjoying the high performance focus,” Jones said.

“It is very competitive, even if it is just within yourself, you know you’ve got to beat yourself on what you were last week or last year.”

While WA were beaten by Victoria in their first match of the 2017 NICC on Monday, Jones achieved bowling figures of 2/33 in his 10 overs.

“My goal is just to do well again, you can’t ask for anything more than to do well personally,” he said.

“From our team point of view, we’ve taken more of a high performance approach to this year’s tournament so we’ve got a better side on paper.

“We’ve got a good core group now, we’ve had the same core for the last three or four years and we are starting to become really strong.”

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