Ryan Brown has been left to wonder what could have been.
The Lavington paceman claimed a five-wicket haul in NSW Country's thrilling five-run win against ACT Country in game one of the invitational series on Monday, but was ruled out for the rest of the week with a side strain.
Brown claimed the wicket of ACT Country opener Josh Staines in his first spell, before he came back with four wickets in his next three overs to help NSW Country dismiss them for 152, six runs short of the target.
His figures of 5-25 ensured he was clearly the best player on the ground in the 50-over game, but the next morning he knew he was in trouble.
"It was definitely a bit frustrating after doing well the first day, but what can you do," Brown said.
"It's still a great experience being here.
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"The physio said it was a bit of a side strain.
"I was going to try get back up for the rest of the week, but I don't think it's worth hurting it more.
"It was a little bit sore, it's getting a bit better with exercises, but I won't be back this week."
Despite the setback, Brown rated the effort his best personal achievement.
"It didn't really click in the first spell, but I came back in my second spell and tried to bang it in short of a length and it started working," he said.
"I got one wicket in the first spell and four in my next three overs.
"I've played against a few of them a few times. There was a few at the last carnival (in Goulburn in November) that we were at to get picked in this one.
"I knew a few of their players and there was a few new guys as well.
"It was a good challenge. They're a good team with good players."
Brown has remained with the NSW Country squad throughout the week and has enjoyed the experience.
"I've been running lots of drinks," he laughed.
"I'm not a great watcher of cricket, I'd rather be out there trying to do something.
"Hopefully I've done enough to hold my spot for next year, but I'll have to bowl well at the carnival again next year."
Corowa all-rounder Ben Mitchell has also featured for NSW Country this week, along with Wagga's Luke Docherty.
"It's definitely good to see a few Riverina boys getting a look in at NSW level, there's definitely some good players around the area," Brown added.
Lavington will be sweating on the fitness of Brown for the remainder of the Cricket Albury-Wodonga season, with the Panthers half a game outside the top-six with nine rounds to play.
"I'll see how it all goes from next week onwards, but I think it might be a two-week injury," Brown admitted.
"I've got to get it right for the rest of the season, that's the plan.
"It's very tight at the moment. Last week we could have jumped into about third spot from sixth or seventh, which is good to see."
NSW Country split the two T20 matches against ACT Country on Thursday to lead 3-2 overall, with a one-dayer to round out the series on Friday.