Sawtell opener, Kel McMillan, will be looking to give his side a good start in the grand final replay against Coffs Hotel Tiger
Sawtell opener, Kel McMillan, will be looking to give his side a good start in the grand final replay against Coffs Hotel Tiger

McMillan?s laid back attitude

By GREG WHITE

COFFS Harbour District cricket's first 2005-06 centurion is pretty laid back when it comes to the game but if his Sawtell team mates are mentioned, Kel McMillan is straight to the point.

"If we have to lose, I'd rather lose with this bunch of blokes than win with somebody else," he says.

Losing isn't something McMillan has had much practice at lately.

His club are reigning premiers.

They opened the year with a bang against Park Beach Bowling Club Colts, the opener's dig returning 106 off 136 balls, before last Saturday's despatch of Nana Glen.

"We're travelling pretty well," McMillan said, when told tomorrow's opponent is grand final foe, Coffs Hotel Tigers.

Last season's premiership victory was McMillan's first in 22 years of A Grade cricket.

"I was born in Dubbo and played all my career in that area," he said.

"Guess that means I'm a genuine bush boy."

He made the move to the coast six years ago and has built a reputation as an outstanding wicketkeeper/batsman.

Again, that sort of description brings out the laconic humour.

"Calling me a wicketkeeper is a pretty fancy way of saying my job is to stop the occasional ball getting through."

Making his ton in the opening match was a pleasant surprise, especially as he'd taken on the added responsibility of captaincy with Todd Gill ruled out.

"Because I was pretty fresh from winter it didn't take much out of me," he said.

"But in the strange ways of the game the euphoria didn't last."

McMillan was referring to his follow up innings.

Fresh from a century, his next appearance delivered a lowly 13 against Nana Glen.

"The pressure will be on the Tigers tomorrow," McMillan said.

"In back of their minds is losing to us when we struggled early and they might have got us on the second day when we had to play the waiting game.

"We have a top bunch of youngsters and some fresh faces who can really play."

Maybe, McMillan is not so laid back, after all.



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