A rumour that Black Caps bowler Tim Southee would return home to play a one-off match for his club side Maungakaramea has been dismissed - as the Premier Men's Dargaville Shield cricket competition springs to life tomorrow.
"I think that was wishful thinking from Flea [Northland Cricket Association competitions manager Neal Parlane], but nah, not this week," Southee said. "I get back and play whenever I get a chance but, at the moment, the main priority is the Aussie tour and, unfortunately, a game of club cricket didn't really fit into the preparation."
Northern Advocate records show Southee, 26, last played for his club team in 2012, scoring 39 no.
"Every chance I get I enjoy going back and playing for Maungakaramea.
"It's where it all started and I've got fond memories, so I do enjoy helping out wherever I get a chance.
"Unfortunately, it doesn't quite fit in this weekend but maybe another time I'll be able to get out there and have a crack with them."
Northland club cricket begins tomorrow with several fixtures being played around the region.
The men's premier competition, the Dargaville Shield, starts with a match between Mid Western and Rodney at Kaipara Flats Cricket Club, while the two Whangarei teams battle it out at Kensington Park - both start at 11am.
In the men's reserve grade, the Greg Guy Shield, current shield holders Mid Western play Rodney reserves at Kaipara Flats and the two Whangarei teams will do battle at Kensington Park.
These matches start at 12pm.