Australian cricket adventure for Rudd

Casey Rudd batting for Grange CC in Adelaide.
Casey Rudd batting for Grange CC in Adelaide.

Bridlington all-rounder Casey Rudd has swapped the English winter for the sunshine of Australia.

As the first Ashes Test begins this week, Rudd, who was the top batsman and bowler for the Dukes Park in 2013, is now chancing his arm Down Under.

He is playing for Grange Cricket Club in the A Grade Adelaide Turf League and told the Free Press: “It’s a real friendly community club.”

“The standard of the league is pretty good and they like to play it hard.”

He has already noticed a big difference between cricket in Australia from what he is used to back in Yorkshire.

Rudd added: “We play two-day games which is taking some getting used to. We fielded 80 overs last week chasing leather all day.

“The pitches are a lot faster and harder also.

“I’ve got to find out that the Aussies work on their game a bit more then we do, as they train more and a lot harder.

“Grange train twice a week and they are quite intense sessions which is a good thing.”

Rudd hit 721 runs in York Senior League Division One last season, at an average of 42, and was the third highest wicket-taker with 38 victims.

But he believes playing with and against top quality cricketers will only improve his game.

He said: “I’m currently playing with Brad Young who has played a handful of one-day internationals for Australia and was selected for the Adelaide Strikers last year in the Big Bash Competition.

“He’s a top bloke who’s always giving out advice, especially on my bowling.

“I’m also playing with Mark Harrity who has played for South Australia and Worcestershire and he is fast.”

Fortunately, he can rely on a few team-mates to help him out when the inevitable Ashes banter begins.

“There are a couple more English lads out here - one from Wigan who is living out here and one from Wakefield, a fellow Yorkshiremen which has made it easier to settle in.

“These Aussies don’t understand the Yorkshire accent at all,” said Rudd, who is staying until March.

But he is hoping to make his voice heard if the Ashes matches go England’s way.

He said: “I will hopefully be going to the Adelaide Oval test with my dad and mum who are coming over to watch the first and second Tests.

“The Aussies think they’re going to win out here, but they have no chance,” said Rudd, who is predicting a 3-0 series win for the tourists.

He has also got a message for his former football team-mates back in Bridlington, having played for Snooker Centre last season.

“I think some Driffield League sides would give some of these A League sides out here a run for their money. The football is useless out here,” he joked.

And he has noticed one other major difference away from the crease, saying: “I can finally use cricket as a chat up line as the girls are into the cricket a bit more over here.”