JUSTIN Avendano proved to be a catch for the Sydney Sixers in BBL08 last summer, until injury prematurely ended his season.
So it seems fitting that fishing is high on the agenda when the 26-year-old top-order batsman has any spare time.
"Me and my mate go about 30 minutes north of Port Macquarie and we also go south to Crowdy Head; if we can escape Sydney as much as we can, that's what we try to do," he said.
"The Port Macquarie community is amazing. We spend so much time in Sydney that it's nice to come out into areas like here because it's beautiful."
Avendano and Sixers teammate Dan Fallins were in Port Macquarie on November 4 as they continue preparations ahead of their inaugural Big Bash clash in Coffs Harbour against Adelaide Strikers on January 5.
So far around 3500 tickets have been sold for the match and Avendano said it was always exciting to play matches at smaller, regional venues.
"At places like the SCG you need around 20,000 to get a good atmosphere, but at regional grounds you only need a couple of thousand and it's electric," he said.
"It was really exciting for me last season to make my debut but the most fun was running drinks in the first game and being in the dugout and around the crowd.
"I think I would have been extremely nervous if I'd been selected to play in that first game."
The right-handed batsman was happy to bide his time, but a condensed Big Bash League season schedule for the 2019/2020 summer meant he was likely to add to his three matches in the magenta.
"I want to play as many games as I can but I also understand that we've got quite a good team. Last year we reached the semi finals with our batters really holding the fort," Avendano said.
"Wherever I can help the team out I'm happy, whether that be on the sidelines or playing.
"Everyone wants that hundred, but I understand that might not come this year."
Most importantly, Avendano's advice for budding cricketers centred around enjoyment.
"I gave away the game three years ago for a year to work and I came back purely to have fun with my mates," he said.
"That rocketed me up into the next level because I was not caring so much about the result and (more about) having fun with my mates.
"That's when you play your best cricket."
Avendano said the sport now offered more pathways for both boys and girls to pursue.
"Now with regional cricket there are amazing pathways coming through," he said.
"Coming here and promoting cricket is great for us and it helps the community out so we're just trying to raise awareness in Port Macquarie as well."
What else is happening in sport?
While you're with us, you can now receive updates straight to your inbox from the Port Macquarie News. To make sure you're up to date with all the news, SIGN UP HERE.