QUEANBEYAN’S Lakshmn Shivakumar says time in the middle is the only solution to his worrying form slump this season.
One of Queanbeyan’s leading run scorers last season, Shivakumar has struggled across all three formats of the game in 2013/14.
The stylish left-hander is averaging just 15 this campaign. Of greater concern, the ACT under-19s representative has scored only 11 runs in his past four innings as Queanbeyan gears up for a tough Douglas Cup finals campaign.
Shivakumar acknowledged his lean run of late had taken its toll.
“I’m just struggling confidence-wise at the moment but hopefully I can get my act together coming into the finals,” he said.
“Cricket’s a tough game. When you’re in form, everything comes easy but when you’re struggling it all becomes hard work.
“I’ve been hitting a few more balls than usual in the nets and trying to get back into old habits. But the most important thing is just getting some time out in the middle which obviously I haven’t been able to do lately.”
Shivakumar’s woes continued on the opening day’s play of Queanbeyan’s penultimate round clash with ANU at Freebody Oval last Saturday.
Out LBW for three, Shivakumar’s fall precipitated a top-order collapse that saw the Bluebags slump to 4/48 in reply to ANU’s modest first innings total of 132.
But not for the first time this season, Michael Curtale (48 not out) and Dean Solway helped steady the ship for Queanbeyan as the side finished the day’s play at 4/105, needing just 28 more runs to secure first innings points.
The Bluebags’ top-order collapse was far from an aberration this season with Shivakumar far from the only poorly-performed member of the Bluebags’ top order of late.
“The lower order has come together well and put on some runs for us a few times this season but our top order needs to get it together before finals,” Shivakumar acknowledged.
Who: Queanbeyan v ANU
Where: Freebody Oval
When: Saturday, 11am.