Call for the cap: Geraldton wants representative players to express their interest for Country Week.
Call for the cap: Geraldton wants representative players to express their interest for Country Week.

The Geraldton Regional Cricket Board is taking early steps to lay foundations for the 2013 Country Week championships.

In a reflection of selectors’ intent to allow the best opportunity for a tilt at country cricket’s Holy Grail, players are this week being asked to step up for selection.

Geraldton fell by five wickets to season’s A-section grand final.

GRCB president Nic Rafanelli said the board needed players to nominate early to give the team the best possible chance to go one better come January.

“We’re trying to make life easier for the selectors so they can plan training times and work out the best combinations,” Rafanelli said.

“Obviously we’d like to keep last season’s teams, but that’s not going to happen and we’ll need other players doesn’t matter if you’re a B-grader — it’s about representing your association.

“I can speak from personal experience and say to players who’ve never been to Country Week that you’ll have a great time and chances are, improve your cricket as well.”

The CSBP Country Championships, as officially known, will be held in Perth from January 20 to 26.

The GRCB intends to send two sides and is serious about returning with titles after the 2011-12 teams were runners-up in their respective A and C-Sections.

Clint Yeates, Geraldton’s A captain last season, backed Rafanelli’s call.

“If we have 24 or 25 players in mind before Christmas, it will make the preparations a lot easier,” he said.

“You don’t want to be chasing people up at the last minute.”

Geraldton’s number one side has developed a wonderful record since 2000.

It secured titles in 2001 and ’05 and wins in 49 of 69 games — a superb success rate of just over 71 per cent.

The number two side also has a great record.

It made the C-Section final last summer, is back in B-Section, where it also played in 2003 and from 2007-11.

Since 2000, this team has won 43 and tied one of 68 games — a success rate of almost 64 percent with C-Section titles in 2002 and ’06.

Rafanelli urged players to nominate their interest with the board’s executive officer, Helen Day, at helenlday@westnet.com.au.

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