First XI hope to be back to full strength

MANNING First XI hope to be back to full strength for the all-important Mid North Coast inter-district cricket clash against Hastings at Port Macquarie on Sunday February 3.

The side has to win this game to have any hope of defending their title in the final.

Manning lost the opening two games of the season to Macleay and Hastings, but kept their chances alive with a commanding win over Macleay last Sunday at the Johnny Martin Oval, where United team-mates Ricky Campbell and Jackson Witts were prominent.

They went into that game without Northern NSW representatives Michael Rees and Bryan Warren, who were in New Zealand along with Josh Ferris, Brad Staff and Jamie Hartland, who were carrying injuries.

News that Rees now won't be going into the army until after the season is a further boost for Manning.