By GREG WHITE
TEENAGE batsman Lloyd Moore will have an incredible story to tell his grandchildren one day.
Not many country cricketers are met by a horde of adoring schoolchildren clamouring for autographs when leaving the arena but the Dorrigo youngster found himself the centre of attention after hammering 89 for Coffs Harbour in the Twenty/20 clash with Clarence River at BCU International Stadium on Friday.
So dominant and spectacular was Moore's performance he completely overshadowed the invitational players who between them boast more than 200 caps for New South Wales and Australia.
His innings careered from precise judgement to recklessness - in keeping with the format - with his first six landing on the roof of the sideline tent shading his team mates.
There was even some controversy, with the teenager looking awfully sheepish after a mix up led to the run out of guest player Richard Chee Quee.
"At first there was a suggestion we old blokes would make up the numbers but finally, it was decided to blood these youngsters," veteran representative batsman Selwyn Manz said.
"Watching that effort from young Lloyd shows the selectors made the right decision.
"Sure, a couple of shots were rash and he had some luck but that's how Twenty/20 is played."
Moore found himself another fan in former Test player Doug Walters who also heaped praise on bowlers Hugh Campbell and Joe Mennie.
"We saw fine talent in that batsman but what the young 'leggies' did was a great job," the living legend said.
"The aim of these matches is to identify ability and groom them for greater things and all the young players here have done a wonderful job."
Coffs won the toss and totalled 8-173 despite several lapses where the run rate slowed significantly.
"Unfortunately, these Twenty/20 games always seem to be won by the team batting first but a quarter of the way through (when the innings stumbled) I thought this wouldn't be the case," Walters said.
"But they (Coffs Harbour) worked hard when the time came to field."
The Clarence innings rarely sparked, due mainly to firm Coffs commitment in the field giving the visitors only fleeting opportunities in the run chase.
Ball returns were sharp, bowling was tight and only guest middle order batsman Graham Smith troubled the scorers with a brisk 41 runs.
But it was the bowling of Campbell and Mennie that eventually destroyed the innings.
Campbell wrapped up the tail taking 3-37 after Chee Quee made the breakthrough with two wickets from four deliveries in his first over.
Clarence were finally bowled out for 123 with two overs to spare.
A crowd of close to 1000 enjoyed the match on a day that belonged almost entirely to a schoolboy from Dorrigo.