Friday, 22 April 2011
By any standards that is an impressive knock and, as usual, people have been too quick to write off the talented all-rounder. As Wes Durston amply showed yesterday, talent will always out and Park should have plenty of opportunities this season to showcase his skills.
Indeed, I'd be surprised if he wasn't recalled for Monday's game against the Netherlands, certainly watching Usman Khawaja's running yesterday. I don't think John Morris will risk aggravating a problem in a game that realistically we should win anyway. There's plenty of talent in that Derbyshire side and while the visitors beat us last year, thanks to Michael Dighton's century, having seen their capabilities yesterday I would be very surprised if that was repeated.
Yesterday's display, hopefully replicated over the next two, was a clear indication of a united dressing room with eleven players - young ones mind - all pulling together. It was a pleasure to watch and I would urge anyone to go and see them as the season progresses. Positive and purposeful, in the field we looked on a different level and although we were a bowler down, our lads hit better lines than a side which, on paper at least, has one of the better attacks in the division.
Keep in mind the youth. There was promising bowling from Ross Whiteley to follow his batting of the previous day, while Tom Poynton kept wicket very tidily. Later in the day Chesney Hughes and Dan Redfern showed composure in seeing us through to the end of the day with fielders close around them. It crossed my mind as Chesney unleashed a trademark booming drive that silly point was perhaps the most appositely named position on a cricket field, especially when the affable West Indian is letting go...
With Paul Borrington and Mark Footitt fit in the next couple of weeks, Matt Higginbottom taking three wickets yesterday, Ben Slater and Hamza Siddique doing well for university sides and Jake Needham and Tom Knight there for spin options, John Morris is getting close to having good options for the side.
If they can replicate yesterday on a regular basis and enjoy the rub of the green with injuries there'll be some mighty fine cricket down Derby way this season.
Get yourself down there - and get behind them!