Friday, March 3, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
Have hockey stick and cricket bat will travel – that is the motto of Mackay’s 17 year old dual sports representative Haiden Mellifont (pictured).
When he is not cracking boundaries or unveiling his array of shots as a stylish top order batsman during the summer months, the gifted St Patrick’s College Year 12 student can be found plying his attacking skills on a hockey field.
All eyes will be on Haiden when he leads the Capricornia Boys 16-19 yrs representative cricket team into action at the Queensland Schoolboy Cricket Championships to be staged in Maroochydore from this Sunday March 5 to next Wednesday March 8.
The talented Mellifont is one of seven St Patrick’s College players named in a strong Capricornia squad that will line up against some of the finest schoolboy cricketers in the State.
Only six weeks ago versatile Hayden swapped his cricket bat for a hockey stick and gained selection in the Emerging Australian Under 18 Indoor Hockey squad after strong performances at the National titles staged at the Brisbane Sports Entertainment Centre.
Mellifont scored three goals to help the Queensland Gold team finish a creditable fifth and caught the eye of national selectors with top displays at centre half and fullback.
The Emerging Under 18s will attend a training camp in Melbourne in preparation for an international series at home.
Earlier the gun midfielder led Mackay to victory at the State Indoor Hockey titles in Maryborough – inspiring team mates with his technical skills to earn himself yet another Maroons shirt.
Haiden first picked up a hockey stick at the age of eight while a student at Emmanuel Catholic Primary School at Mount Pleasant and has developed into a crack centre half since joining Norths Hockey Club as a fresh-faced 12 year old.
The lanky schoolboy was a key member of Norths’ premiership-winning second grade team in the Mackay Hockey Association in 2022 and is now fully entrenched in the club’s first grade line up.
Last year Haiden was named in the Queensland Hockey Under 19 Merit Team for a proposed ‘Test’ series against New Zealand and is on track for selection in the 2023 squad.
He will represent Mackay Schools in Rockhampton this week and hopes to lead Capricornia to back-to-back titles at the State Hockey Championships in Ipswich from May 18-21.
All-rounder Haiden is one of the young guns at Pioneer Valley Cricket Club and last summer was named Mackay Cricket Association’s Second Grade Player of the Year.
He started his cricket career with Brothers before linking with the Valley as a 13 year old and helping the club win four junior premierships.
The Mackay-Whitsundays representative has blossomed into a dashing top order batsman and handy seam bowler in the senior ranks and figured in the Valley’s triumphant second grade X1 that captured the 40 overs one day competition last summer.
By Chris Karas
Haiden Mellifont is a representative player in both hockey and cricket