WACA Premier Cricket: Wanneroo recruits English County talent, hopes for Mitchell Johnson


Wanneroo is hoping Mitchell Johnson will feature again this season. Picture: Getty Images
WACA Premier Cricket: Wanneroo recruits English County talent, hopes for Mitchell Johnson
Wanneroo is hoping Mitchell Johnson will feature again this season. Picture: Getty Images

AGAIN, it’s a matter of “will he or won’t he?” for Wanneroo Districts Cricket Club regarding a possible early-season appearance from retired Test firebrand Mitchell Johnson.

Assistant coach Sean King said it was not clear whether the express paceman would feature for the WACA Premier Cricket side in the lead-up to his Big Bash campaign with the Perth Scorchers in December.

But the club had not ruled it out.

“I would assume – and it is only an assumption – that he’d have to play a couple of games before Big Bash starts,” he said.

If Johnson did play, King guessed it would be during the club’s last two one-day games at the end of October before the two-day contests began.

“I can’t confirm or deny that… we’re working towards not having him, to be honest, and if we get him then it’s a bonus,” King said.

Wanneroo opens its season with a one-day match against Scarborough on Saturday, October 8.

The side has lost star batsman Jake Fawcett, who left to play grade cricket in NSW, but has gained 19-year-old County cricketer Dan Lawrence.

Lawrence was the third-youngest batsman in County history to make a century when he struck 161 for Essex at 17 and 290 days in 2015.

The knock also made him the youngest ever to hit a century at The Oval and the youngest-ever Essex centurion.

It rightly had pundits touting him a future Test prospect.

He has notched 23 first class matches.

Given his age, he’ll also be eligible for Wanneroo’s colts side, an intimidating prospect for the opposition.

King expected him to bat at No. 4 as a direct swap for Fawcett.

In another boost to their stocks, the Roos have poached under-19s WA medium pacer Connor Smith from Joondalup.

King said the team would remain the same besides those two additions as it looks to improve on a disappointing 14th-place finish last season.

“The team won’t change significantly, but hopefully Lawrence will give us some stiffness in the early to mid order because he’s obviously quite talented,” he said.

“If we hadn’t got Lawrence, I think it would have been a real struggle, but we hope he’ll be a straight swap for Jake (Fawcett).”