The Sheffield Shield 2022 ended with Western Australia lifting the trophy for the first time in 23 years, let us take a look at the players who emerged from the show.
Few of these players have represented Australia in the past, while a number of experienced domestic campaigners also make this list.
641 runs @ 58.27, HS 176*, 2 hundreds, 2 fifties
A long time ago, Australia had cast their eyes on Sam Whiteman for the wicketkeeper’s job. The player even got former Australia keeper Brad Haddin’s backing for the role, but he had to leave behind the gloves following an injury in the 2016 BBL final. Whiteman changed track and became an opener, and it is in the same position that the batter did so well in this season’s Sheffield Shield. He scored a combined 208 runs in the final to ensure Western Australia lifted the trophy.
Given David Warner’s age, an opening slot in the Australian side might come sooner than expected, and Whiteman’s recent returns will go a long way in making a case in the future.
238 runs @ 119, HS 174*, 1 hundred, 10 wickets @ 14.1, BBI 4-24
Aaron Hardie smashed a remarkable, unbeaten 174 in the Sheffield Shield final to ensure that Western Australia’s third innings total went way beyond Victoria’s reach, effectively securing their title.
The right-arm medium pace bowler was also among the wickets, taking 6-70 against Victoria at Perth to ensure his side’s win in a league match. Aged only 23, Hardie is certainly one for the future.
601 runs @ 42.92, HS 121*, 2 hundreds, 3 fifties, 7 wickets @ 16.71, BBI 4-23
Another Western Australia all-rounder makes this list. Hilton Cartwright was briefly considered as an all-round option for Australia, having played two Tests in 2017, before falling down the pecking order. The all-rounder presented a good case for himself, with a decent showing in this season’s Shield.
Apart from posting two hundreds at number four, the 6′ 2″ seamer also grabbed a few key wickets, including a career-best 4-23.
32 wickets @ 17.93, BBI 7-44, five-fors 2, Strike-rate 39.2
The Queensland bowler was the leading wicket-taker in the Sheffield Shield. His remarkable run earned him a county contract with Essex. The player is a well-known entity, having taken a five-for against India ‘A’ in 2020. He was also a member of the Australia squad for the South Africa tour, which was subsequently cancelled in 2021.
25 wickets @ 19.16, BBI 6-57, five-fors 2, Strike-rate 42
Gurinder Sandhu started out in New South Wales, but later shifted to Queensland. This season’s tally of 25 scalps came in six Shield games, including a match-winning 6-57 against South Australia at Adelaide.
The tall quick played a couple of ODIs in 2015, but hasn’t been picked since. A strong first-class season could raise hopes of a comeback, although the Test attack is pretty well-stocked for now.
24 wickets @ 15.95, BBI 5-48, 1 five-for, Strike-rate 42.6
Another player who had a brief stay in the Australia international setup, Chris Tremain picked up 24 wickets in merely five games. He had the third-best bowling average for players with minimum of ten wickets in the season, only behind Sam Rainbird, who had a magical 13-42 against Queensland, and Australia international Jhye Richardson.
Tremain might already be 30, but has shown top form after making a return to his home state.
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