15-year-old Gracemere Bulls fast bowler sets tongues wagging
FAST bowler Jason Merritt has a special connection with the stumps.
When it comes to bowling, Gracemere Bulls cricketer Merritt certainly knows how to connect with them.
The 15-year-old had heads shaking and tongues wagging over the weekend as he continued to impress on the pitch; this time in a representative match.
Rockhampton under-16 paceman Merritt dominated the Central Highlands batsmen, with the tearaway bagging seven wickets for just three runs during his 10 over spell.
His day finished with eight maidens, while two runs came off the bat and the other from a wide.
He certainly doesn't make it easy for batsmen. Building on his last season's best of 6-1 and having collected 20 wickets so far this season, it was only natural the youngster was pretty pleased with his performance.
"It's going pretty good and I've taken a few wickets for the team," Merritt said.
"Last weekend for Rockhampton I took seven for three and in our first and second games I took six in both. I'm one of the main bowlers, sometimes I prefer to have a bat but this year I'm just going really well with my bowling so I'm sticking to that."
He might make it look easy, but Merritt admitted his bowling skill doesn't come easy. The committed junior, who first picked up the bat and ball seven years ago, said the nets were becoming his second home.
"If I get the chance I go down to the nets about four times a week to practise," Merritt said. "You just have to try and get your line and length right and hopefully you get them out or your fielder takes a catch.
"I've been trying to replicate my dad a bit with my batting but with bowling I follow a few of the Australian bowlers and try to bowl with a similar action."
With dreams of one day wearing the baggy green for Australia, Merritt said he would take any chance at playing representative cricket he could.
"If they ask me to play any more rep games for Rocky I will but otherwise I just want to keep playing up with the seniors on Sunday and play in my grade," he said.
"Playing for Australia would be great if I one day had the chance."
After a handful of rounds of the longer form of the game, Merritt and his Gracemere teammates get the opportunity to have a crack at the newer form of the game.
Merritt and his under-16 Bulls buddies are playing in the first round of the Rockhampton Junior Cricket Twenty20 competition on Saturday.
MERRITT'S MAGIC START
2013-14 season statistics
Best bowling: 10-8-3-7