Former East Ballarat cricketer Blake Thomson has been handed a full Victorian Bushrangers contract for the 2017-18 season.
Thomson plied his trade as a rookie last season, but after some promising performances he has been upgraded. Joining him as an upgraded rookie is fast-bowler Xavier Crone and young wicketkeeper Sam Harper.
The 19-year-old joins fellow Ballarat boy Matt Short as a full-time Victorian Bushranger. The pair being two of Victoria's most promising youngsters, while Short is pushing towards the national radar.
Cricket Victoria general manager of cricket Shaun Graf said the Bushrangers focus continues to be about developing its players for national selection while maintaining a level of success in the domestic competition – which it has done successfully in recent time.
Our ongoing focus has been on developing players.
“Our ongoing focus has been on developing players ready for Australian selection while also being highly competitive at domestic level,” Graf said.
“The results clearly show we’re achieving this goal with 13 Victorians representing Australia across all formats in the same period we’ve won three straight Sheffield Shield titles.”
Thomson is known for his aggressive nature at the crease and his ability to score runs quickly – he can also hold up an end with the ball.
The talented right-hander impressed with the Victorian under-23 team throughout the Futures League while he averaged 42 runs in last year’s under-19 National Carnival.