NEIL SHARDLOW: Plenty to do despite our stellar start
WE’VE been able to select an unchanged line-up for this weekend’s three-day game at Berkshire.
Because we’ve done well in the one-day competition, we’ve been switching between formats week-by-week but the team for the three-day games has been pretty much picking itself.
That’s not to say that people in the side are going to stay there regardless if they’re not performing because we do have players up our sleeve that are performing well for their clubs. I think the guys know that.
We’ve got players like Tom Morton and James Hayward that aren’t available for the three-day games, so that makes things a little bit easier for us.
Our highest-ever finish in the championship is third, so we’d like to try and see if we can improve on that this year.
We’ve kept our good form going but we’re not getting too carried away because it’s still early days.
We want to make sure we carry on doing a number of things, like batting for the whole 90 overs in the first innings and carrying things on in the second innings, which we managed to do in the last game.
We also want to be disciplined with bowling, helping the players realise you don’t need to go chasing wickets. If you can put teams under pressure, they’ll eventually give up them up when they begin to worry about scoring runs.
Mike Coles is back bowling now and that’s a big plus for us. He’d been struggling with a calf strain that he picked up a few weeks into the season and having him as a bowling option gives us a bit more variety, in both forms of the game.
I do think it’s possible some other sides will be slightly more worried about playing us at the moment and may be wondering why we’re performing so well.
But they can easily look at our team and see who’s playing, so I don’t think the way they approach us will change too much.
We did beat Berkshire in the Marlborough Cup at South Wilts at the start of the season but it’s another place where we’ve not fared too well in recent years and I’m expecting it to be tough – hopefully we can get a win.
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