WITH his HSC exams almost in sight, local cricket sensation Lewin Maladay is chasing a career in his chosen sport.
Maladay hasn't always had the penchant solely for the willow and behind the stumps at keeper, having excelled as a centre in rugby league, then centre and fullback in rugby union.
"I always played backyard cricket with dad and my brothers. I guess I really haven't stopped since those days," the 17-year-old said.
"I began in the under 10s and I enjoyed all three sports (but) I've always found cricket more interesting and more enjoyable.
"As a bowler I was told I was pretty quick for my age, but in the under 14 rep trials for the Kookaburra Cup, I hurt my back.
"When I was selected for the Woodlawn open cricket team, we didn't have a keeper and, because I couldn't bowl, I said I'd do it. I've never looked back."
In December last year Maladay played in the under 17 national championships in Tasmania as part of the NSW Country/ACT side, finishing second against Victoria, Queensland, Northern Territory, South Australia and Tasmania.
He was one of two NSW Country/ACT players named as members of the Australian merit team at the championships.
In January, he played in a warm-up match against the English team as part of its World Cup preparations.
"Playing against them was great exposure to international cricket. I faced Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad, and despite getting a duck it was an awesome experience," Maladay said.
"Brad Haddin is my inspiration because his style of keeping is pretty to watch. He's a great role model and I can learn a lot from him."
Locally, Maladay plays for Lennox Head in first grade, the Clunes under 17 squad and Ballina's under 19 representative team.
He will play in the Queensland Carbine Cup as a member of the NSW side in September.
On finishing his HSC exams, Maladay hopes to move to Sydney to pursue cricket, having already lined up a couple of clubs to visit.
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