When most people look at Brock Larance they see someone living out the dream of most Australian kids.
Larance plays cricket at some level at least once a week, and sometimes much more for the bulk of the year.
As one of the most talented youngsters in the country Larance attends various training camps and representative carnivals on a regular basis.
And while his sheer love of the game and dream of playing at the highest level spurs him on, the teenager who turns 17 on Friday, admits it does get hard at times.
“I’ve probably not been where I’ve wanted to be mentally,” an honest Larance said on the eve of departing to play with the Australian under 17s side.
“I’ve played a lot of cricket. It gets really tough and I still love the game but sometimes it can feel like I’m going to things just to go to them.”
But after playing a few less matches in recent weeks, and enjoying time away from the game without giving cricket a thought, the passion is back and burning as bright as ever.
On Friday Larance departs for Adelaide where he will take part in what he said will be the “biggest tournament of my life so far”.
Larance and the rest of the Australian under 17s side will take part in the Cricket Australia Under 19 National Championships.
The tournament is a chance for Larance and his teammates to test themselves at a higher level, their side being named the Cricket Australia XI, and that’s something the hard-hitting all-rounder can’t wait to experience.
“I’ve had a bit of time away from the game the last couple of weeks and you really realise why you love it and why you play the game,” he said.
“I’ve really realised what I’m going to be part of and this isn’t going to be anything like what I’ve played in before. The 19s nationals is as good as it gets when you’re a kid.
“It’s a step up so I’ve got to dig in and do what I did to get in.”
Larance did a whole lot to get into the team.
It was in September of this year when Larance starred with both bat and ball for ACT/NSW Country at the Cricket Australia Under 17 National Championships.
“I feel like I’ve earned my spot and playing at the under 17s nationals was hard but I felt like it wasn’t unachievable for where I was and where I am at this time,” he said.
“But this will be the next step. I’ve got to concentrate that bit harder and everything has to go up a level. The 17s was hard and this will be even harder.”
Larance will take on players in the conversation for Sheffield Shield spots and players who were in the mix for the Australian side which competed at under 19s World Cup earlier this year.
It’s a level few get to play at but Larance will be guided by some of the best though with former Australian Test cricketers Ryan Harris and Chris Rogers to be his coaches in Adelaide.
“It’s good to be around them and hear their experiences and what it was like in the Australian team,” Larance said of his coaches.
While not certain of his role in the team, the off-spinning all-rounder was hopeful of a spot in the middle order with the bat and the chance to showcase his ever-improving ability with the ball in the middle overs.
The Cricket Australia XI opens its campaign on Monday against Tasmania.
The tournament runs for 11 days with the finals to be held on December 13.
“Hopefully I can stand up and show I’m up to the standard of such a high quality championships,” Larance said.