SENDING ONE DOWN: Wade Johnston in action.
SENDING ONE DOWN: Wade Johnston in action. John McCutcheon

Last campaign for pained Scorchers bowler

CRICKET: Sunshine Coast bowler Wade Johnston is eager to make the most of this season, after he revealed it will probably be his last.

The 28-year-old is battling chronic back spasms.

"It's getting progressively worse," he said. "So I might just call it a day at the end of this season. I've had a pretty good run."

A Kenilworth dairy farmer, Johnston said he can ill-afford to keep playing but admits it will be hard to give up the game he loves.

"It won't be easy that's for sure. I've always strived to better myself every day I've stepped on the field and I'm going to miss that.

"I'm going to miss the challenge, trying to get those batsmen out, but it's come to a stage where I want to do other things and my body is cracking up so this is the time.

"I'm happy about it (the decision)."

He says he is plagued by the complaint almost all of the time but some days it is worse than others.

He takes painkillers on game days and is confident he can see out the summer.

"I reckon so, if I really keep working hard. I really do think I can contribute to my full potential and get through the season okay," he said.

Johnston started his Queensland premier grade days with the Scorchers in 2008 and was in and out of the side for some time until 2012.

He linked with Sandgate-Redcliffe for three seasons, claiming a Twenty20 crown in the process, before returning to play for the Sunshine Coast in 2016.

He's averaged 25 with the ball for the Scorchers, and 30 this campaign, across all formats.

He's eager to go out in style this season.

"I don't want to be greedy but I'd love to get a two-dayer (title) and a Twenty20 (title)," he said.

And he believes the Scorchers have the potential to do just that.

"We've been generally very consistent (this season) and (coach) Ashley Holznagel and (captain) Alecz Day have got us in a good frame of mind and are driving us in a good direction," he said.

"I seriously do think we can have a real crack, especially with Twenty20."

Holznagel praised Johnston for his time in the game.

"He's been fantastic, over the years," he said.

"He's a good bloke and he's a really good cricketer."

The Scorchers will collide with Wynnum/Manly in Brisbane on Saturday, in their seventh of 11 two-day matches.

The visitors are fifth of 12 teams on the ladder while the hosts are 11th.

Teenager Dean Elliott and Jacob Wilson, 24, are set to make their state first grade debuts for the Scorchers on day two of the contest next weekend.

SCORCHERS: B Mahaffey, A Lovell, A Day (c), K Griggs, P Dein, B Maher, J Matthews/J Wilson, J Mathys/D Elliott, R Smith, J Turnbull, W Johnston

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