ULLADULLA'S Matthew Gilkes has been rewarded for his strong Australian domestic season with NSW by being named in the Blues' squad for the upcoming 2021-22 campaign.
The former Ulladulla High School student, who helped the Blues win the one-day title last season, is joined in the NSW squad by fellow contracted players Sean Abbott, Harry Conway, Trent Copeland, Oliver Davies, Ben Dwarshuis, Jack Edwards, Mickey Edwards, Ryan Hackney, Liam Hatcher, Lachlan Hearne, Moises Henriques, Baxter Holt, Daniel Hughes, Peter Nevill, Kurtis Patterson, Daniel Sams, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha and Chris Tremain.
The 20-player squad is complimented by the state's seven CA contracted players - David Warner, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Steve Smith, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Adam Zampa - and four rookies - Ryan Hadley, Hunar Verma, Jack Nisbet and Josh Baraba.
Baxter Holt, Tanveer Sangha, Oliver Davies and Lachlan Hearne were elevated from the rookie list for the 2021-22 season, while four players Nick Larkin, Daniel Solway, Nathan McAndrew and the rookie-listed Arjun Nair were not offered renewed contracts.
Cricket NSW head of male cricket, Michael Klinger, said the future was looking bright for NSW.
"The elevation of Baxter Holt, Tanveer Sangha, Oliver Davies and Lachlan Hearne from the rookie list is well deserved and very exciting to have such young and talented cricketers coming through the Blues' system," Klinger said.
"Our emphasis on growth and development will further allow these players to continue their progression to be long term sustainable professional cricketers.
"We have three new additions to our rookie list to go with Ryan Hadley who was there last season and that is extremely exciting.
"Hunar Verma, Jack Nisbet and Josh Baraba are three young pace bowlers with fantastic attributes, character and attitudes.
"We look at all these aspects as well as skill level and performance when introducing new cricketers onto our rookie list.
It will be great to watch them develop and grow in our system going forward."
Klinger said a holistic approach was taken when introducing players to the rookie list.
"With our rookies, we have a big emphasis on cricket and life balance including those who are still at school, university or working," Klinger said.
"We will provide this balance to our rookies as well as all our professional athletes on our list."
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