FORMER Nestles captain Cam Williams will not get the chance to light up the Victorian Premier Cricket (VPC) Bush Bash on his old stomping ground.
Essendon coach Brendan Joyce yesterday said Williams was unlikely to receive a call-up to the first XI for the Twenty20 bonanza on Saturday.
The Bombers play Footscray-Edgewater at Avery’s Paddock in Port Fairy at 11am, before taking on Geelong at Nestles’ home ground Reid Oval at 3pm.
Williams made a name for himself as a hard-hitting batsman at Nestles before joining Essendon this season, wanting to test himself in the VPC competition.
He produced his best knock of the campaign last weekend when he made 55 batting at number eight in a one-wicket loss to St Kilda.
But Joyce said Williams was all but certain to line up with the Bombers’ seconds, which will also play two Twenty20 matches at Kardinia Park in Geelong.
“Cam got some runs on the weekend. We would’ve liked to bring him down, he’s been great for the club,” he said.
“He’s already played one game in the firsts. But unfortunately we’ve gone for a different mix.
“He’s a long-term prospect for us.”
Joyce said the Bombers were pleased with what Williams had delivered in his first season at the club, despite averaging just 15.13.
He expected Williams to get a chance to bat higher up the order in the second XI Twenty20 matches on Saturday.
“It takes time to adjust. I think he’ll have a really good back half of the year once he gets into it,” he said.
“He’s still got a lot of cricket ahead of him.”
While Williams won’t be a part of the contingent that travels to the south-west, Joyce was adamant Essendon would not be short of explosive talent.
Former Zimbabwe under 19 representative Solomon Mire, 24, is the big-name inclusion and enters the weekend fresh from an unbeaten century.
Mire, a community rookie with the Melbourne Renegades, belted 101 not out last week.
He also has two half-centuries to his name and is averaging 47.71.
Joyce said Essendon was looking forward to the trip. The Bombers are eighth on the VPC ladder after eight rounds.
“We’re eighth at the moment, won 3½ games and there are a couple of games there we should’ve won,” Joyce said.
“We were right in it until the last over. We’ve been pretty competitive. We’re tracking in the right direction.”