BEN Mitchell has become the latest Bathurst cricket talent to join the first grade ranks of NSW Premier Cricket following his top tier debut for Sydney University in Saturday's win at home over Penrith.
Following a season which has included a Poidevin-Gray century and a second grade knock of 83 Mitchell was given an opportunity to showcase what we could do in first grade in the weekend's one-day clash.
While he didn't get the opportunity to swing the bat he made the most of his time with the ball, claiming 2-26 from his five overs. One of those wickets was that of Dubbo's Henry Railz (3).
Penrith were all out for 235 in the final over of their innings and Sydney Uni's chase never looked unsteady, with Mitchell's fellow Poidevin-Gray teammate Ryan McElduff finishing with an unbeaten 66.
Mitchell didn't mind at all not having to pick up the willow.
"It was a great feeling to get a crack at the grade. I got a good bowl and didn't even need to bat because we got them four down," he said.
"It would have been good to have a crack but I wouldn't have wanted to be going out there needing 20 runs because knowing me I'd probably snick one.
"It was great to have a bowl though. I really enjoyed it."
Mitchell had hopes he might be able to get a shot at first grade before the end of the season, and figured one of the three remaining one-day games might be his best chance.
"This was a one-day fixture and I wasn't expecting to be up the in the two-day fixtures," he said.
"I've played a couple of the T20s already, and I prefer the shorter formats. All-in-all I'm happy to get the experience."
Mitchell currently boasts a batting average of 40.8 across all Sydney competitions this 2020-21 season along with 26 wickets.
The win keeps Sydney University flying high at the top of the first grade table with 44 points.
Manly-Warringah (40) and Sydney (39) aren't far behind in a small three-team breakaway at the head of the competition.
Mitchell's regular second grade squad, captained by Bathurst's Max Hope, are still in a strong position at third.