Tuesday, 6 August 2013

In passing...

Warm congratulations to Steve Stubbings, whose second team sit proudly atop the Championship table tonight.

It is tribute to aggressive cricket played by a young side that has young seamers of talent in Marsden, Taylor, Cork and Cotton, good spinners in Burgoyne and Knight, plus enough batting to score runs quickly and allow time to force a win.

Read into it as you will, but while fully accepting that it is a further step to the county game, the efforts of this side over the summer augurs well for our future. With equally encouraging results and performances in the Academy, there's plenty of reasons to be cheerful.

Keep in mind the five-year plan and that this is only year two.

I see a very bright future, whether we stay up this year or not.


Marc said...

I agree that it,s good to see both the 2nd XI and the academy teams doing well,but by the same token we have to remain cautious.

There is a huge difference between cricket at that level and then making the step up to county standard. When looking at the current first team squad there are no young players who we can honestly say have yet made the grade. Redfern,Chesney Hughes and Poynton are theoretically the closest. Poynton is good enough to hold his own as a wicket keeper but I doubt he will ever be more than a batsman who will occasinally get you a fifty.That of course,may be perfectly acceptable. Hughes is more than capable and has the ability to be a top class player,but he still frustrates as often as he satisfies and gets himself out when he should be piling up the runs. Potentially,he is by far the best we have,but he needs to show much more consistency in the future and eradicate some of his obvious weaknesses.

I think Redfern is in most danger of missing the cut. Having been a regular for more or less the last four seasons,his progress has been at best patchy and at worst,non existant. His stats are far from impressive and this season has been an absolute disaster,at least with the bat. You can sympathise with anyone who has a bad spell but a bad season is not really acceptable. You can only persist with someone for so long and another bad season next year may test Krikken,s patience beyond it,s limit.

The remainder still come under the "jury out" heading. A number are showing positive signs and I hope that continues to be the case. We need some of these players to make the grade but the bottom line is it hinges on performances on the field. Yes,there are certainly some grounds for optimism but we are still some way from being able to say the blueprint has worked.

Paul said...

I agree with the vast majority of Marc's comments.

Chesney is definitely the best of the bunch although we can hardly claim him to be an academy success. He looks to have great potential but must be handled and steered in the right way by the coaches with hopefully Shiv acting as his mentor.

Poynton is a good keeper at the moment slightly better than Johnson but his batting is certainly weaker than Johnsons which is presumably why we made this odd signing. No successful team can afford to carry a wicket keeper batting as low as 9 as has been the case sometimes this season with Poynton. However there is still tome for him to develop this important facet of his game.

It seems as though Redfern has been around years with the words " great potential " usually attached to any sentence about him. Personally I think the club have bulled him up too much and he has started to believe his own publicity. His batting figures are going backwards despite his break through 100 last season. Despite still being young 2 centuries over the years so far is not good enough for our number 5 batsmen. Ironically in one day cricket his bowling has been good and possibly under used. Again there is time to fulfil his potential ( that word again!) but next year is huge. He will know this but it wouldn't do any harm to impress this on him which will hopefully focus his mind a bit more.

With regards to the rest..

Burgoyne looks a promising bat and strong character although at the moment his bowling while tidy does not look threatening.

For me Knight looks like he has lost his nice loop which was evident when he first played and now fires it in a la Yardy which is why I presume Burgoyne is ahead of him.

Every time Alex Hughes plays he seems to be in the action one way or another and looks our best prospect in all forms of the game.

Not seen Higginbotham so can't comment.

It is great that we are actually talking about so many young players but as Marc says it is far too early to judge the blueprint yet but if 2 of the above become fixtures in the team for me that will be success. We can then look to the next bunch...

Let's hope the first team build on the success of the twos !