WESTERN'S bid to get back on top of the Cricket NSW Country Championships pile will be aided by the presence of six Bathurst talents, as the association looks for their first title in four years.
St Pat's Old Boys' Bailey Brien, Mitch Taylor and Connor Slattery along with Rugby Union's Ryan Peacock, Jameel and Imran Qureshi are hoping to take Western to the top in the Goulburn tournament, which gets underway on Friday.
Brien, Taylor and Peacock are all at different stages in their representative journey.
For Brien this is his first Western call up and a great chance to learn among the region's top talents, while for Taylor he's back for his second dig in the blue and red colours and knows what to expect this time around.
But Peacock is in the exciting position of making a return to Western after a three season absence from the side, where he had previously helped the association claim a title in 2016-17.
Peacock is yet to reach a half century for the open Western side and would love to change that this weekend.
"It's great to be back. I've missed playing in this team with these boys. It's really exciting," he said.
"I would have liked a few more runs this season after making a few starts but the way I'm hitting the ball doesn't disappoint me. A big score isn't far around the corner and hopefully I can find one this weekend.
"This is a really good squad with nice batting depth. I've only played at a zone level with Mitch [Bower] and Marty [Jeffrey] but I know there's a fair few guys from last year who are back again. It's a different side from the ones I've played with in the past but I think that's exciting."
Brien is one of several debutants selected in the Western team and is just looking forward to the experience of the Country Championships.
"There's a few other first timers so it's good to have that in common with them. I'm really keen to go because I didn't expect this at all. When I got the phone call I was really happy. It will be a great couple of days there," he said.
"I felt like I've been hitting the ball well this year though I haven't hit as many runs as I would have liked to so far but I've been feeling good out in the middle so hopefully that can translate over at this carnival."
Brien has made a solid start to his Bathurst Orange Inter District Cricket campaign this season with a 92 in his most recent round against CYMS as well as a 43 against Rugby Union.
Taylor is another player who hasn't taken long to make his mark in this season of BOIDC.
He's picked up seven wickets across his three first grade games and enjoyed a strong Western debut at last season's Country Championships when he claimed 3-31 against Illawarra.
While he hasn't been thrilled by his start to 2020-21 he's hopeful he can peak at the right time.
"it's a whole different kind of cricket down there and it's always great to get this sort of experience. I'm still yet to reach my best but hopefully that comes to me this year," he said.
"This is probably one of the best Western teams I've been a part of and I reckon we can go the whole way if we play our best cricket."
Western takes on Illawarra in Friday's opener before playing Riverina and the 2018-19 champion ACT Southern Districts across the weekend.