Renshaw tons up on return to cricket
Opener hits century in Queensland Premier Cricket after returning early from UAE to tune up for Sheffield Shield tilt
20 October 2018, 06:29 PM AEST
Matthew Renshaw has started his bid for a recall to the Australian Test team in the ideal fashion, with a century for his Brisbane club side.
Playing in Queensland Premier Cricket, Renshaw started patiently on a green-tinged deck at Ken Mackay Oval in the Brisbane suburb of Nundah – it took him nearly an hour to get off the mark – before slotting into his groove to bring up the century with his 12th boundary from 130 balls, having also hit three sixes.
His patience and diligence early was rewarded as he cashed in late in the day as he raced to 145 not out from 174 balls at the close, in a 272-run second-wicket partnership with Tom Rowley as the top order rewarded captain Cameron Boyce's decision to bat first.
The conditions are quite literally half a world away from the dusty decks in the UAE where Renshaw was an unused batsman in Australia's 1-0 Test series defeat that was catalogued with a series of batting collapses, and one herculean match-saving innings that earned an unlikely draw in Dubai.
The knock continues a healthy vein of form for Renshaw and puts the Queenslander on course for a return to the Australia side after coach Justin Langer said his lack of recent match practice saw him left out of the Test squad.
First stop, however, will be Thursday's second round of the JLT Sheffield Shield where the Queensland Bulls will be eager to welcome back the batsman following two horror collapses of their own against Tasmania last week.
The Bulls travel to the Adelaide Oval to play South Australia at the venue that will host the opening match of the Domain Test Series against India, the world's No.1 Test side, in early December.
Another Test hopeful and Queensland teammate, Joe Burns made 0 and 16 in his first Shield game of the season. He took some early-season frustration out in his Premier Cricket outing for Northern Suburbs, blasting 216 from 237 balls with 20 boundaries and 10 sixes against the Sunshine Coast.
Renshaw said he was as hungry for runs as ever following his snub from the Test team to face Pakistan, but was trying to put thoughts of returning to Baggy Green out of his head in the short term.
"It hurts because every human would be disappointed to miss out and that is a good sign because it shows how much I want it," Renshaw told News Corp ahead of Toombul's match against South Brisbane.
"Having been out of the side over the past year it has been a tough year but it is good to have people I can fall back on and come back and play grade cricket with guys I have known for the last eight or nine years.
"I just need to score runs and have some time in the middle. We have a few Shield games to prepare and not even worry about what is happening in the summer.
"We won a Shield with Queensland last season and hopefully we can do it again because not many teams have been able to go back to back."
Renshaw also dismissed any fears of lingering concussion after he copped a blow fielding at short leg in Australia's warm-up game that ultimately led to his exclusion from the Test side.
"I am completely clear now. My two big bouts of concussion have been at short leg so I will try and stay away from short leg, especially in grade cricket," he said before adding he would field in the position again for the national team if required to do so.
"I would be concerned about fielding there but if the captain or coach told me to field there I would.
"At 22 I am still one of the younger guys and that is where they generally go so I will just have to deal with it without worrying too much."
Premier Cricket wasn't as fruitful for other notables around the country, with former captain Steve Smith out for a duck in his match for Sutherland, caught behind off NSW Blues seamer Harry Conway. Smith did later pick up 2-28 in six overs of leg-spin.
Randwick-Petersham opener David Warner made 15 from nine balls, with one six and a boundary, before he was caught out.And in Western Australia, Cameron Bancroft fell just short of a century when he was dismissed for 95 from 230 balls while captaining his club side Willetton in their two-day match against Bayswater-Morley.