Joe Leach was back training with his Worcestershire team-mates yesterday (Thursday) after completing a highly successful winter playing for North Canberra Gungahlin in Australia.

The 24-year-old all-rounder flew back to New Road earlier this week to prepare for the county's forthcoming pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi.

He finished his five month spell Down Under at the top of the Northies batting and bowling lists in the Australian Capital Territory first grade competition.

Leach helped his side win the T20 competition – their first trophy for 10 years -and reach the semi-finals of the 50 over tournament.

He also impressed England assistant coach Paul Farbrace when bowling in the nets with the England squad during their spell in North Canberra preparing for the Tri-Series competition against Australia and India.

Leach ended as NCG's top run-scorer in the ACT with 503 runs at an average of 35.93 and a strike rate of 91.8.

He scored four half centuries with a top score of 72 against Eastlake and just finished ahead of Scotland international George Munsey (472 runs at 33.83).

Leach's complete list of ACT scores were 30, 5, 41, 64, 40, 21, 19, 72, 63, 5, 15, 58, 36 and 34.

The Stafford born player, who made his first class debut for Leeds-Bradford MCCU, also was NCG's top wicket-taker in the ACT.

He finished with 27 wickets at an average of 22.07 with a best haul of 5-31 against Ginninderra.

Joe will be reflecting on his winter Down Under, last season at New Road, and giving his thoughts on the challenges which lie ahead to the Worcestershire CCC website in the next few days.

*County paceman Jack Shantry will complete his spell in Australia with Greenvale Kangaroos this weekend on the second day of the Victorian Premier Cricket Bartercard Men's Premier Firsts clash with visiting Melbourne University.

The Kangaroos were bowled out for 170 on the opening day with Melbourne reaching 103-1 in reply.

Worcestershire opener Richard Oliver will captain Geelong City who entertain Murgheboluc in a Geelong Cricket Association two day encounter.

All-rounder Ross Whiteley is also still in Australia but he has played his last game for Prospect CC as they have a bye this weekend and he will fly direct to Abu Dhabi.