SHARDLOW: We have a lot to be proud of

IT HAS definitely been a season that I’ll always remember and it’s been fantastic to be a part of.

Seeing the joy on the faces of the players at certain points, especially after the trophy semi-final win over Staffordshire, was amazing but there have also been downsides to that and it really has been a rollercoaster ride.

The guys were broken-hearted in the dressing room after the final last week and hearing all the speeches and watching Cumberland lift the trophy was really difficult for them.

But in the game we struggled batting wise and bowling wise we just didn’t bowl to the right areas. Cumberland did that and in the end, they deserved to win.

We batted first but were all out for 184 on the second day (Ashur Morrison top-scoring with 59) before they got to 186-3 in just over 32 overs.

Back in August, we were top of the Championship and were in to a cup final but we’ve ended up not winning either of those.

In the Championship, the league table doesn’t lie at all because we lost to the two sides above us and the two sides we beat were below us.

Against the mid-table sides we had the lion’s share of the games and with a bit more luck or without the disruption of the weather, we might have picked up another win and finished top.

It’s tough but hopefully that can spur us on to try and make sure we do better when we get into that situation again.

The discipline has been a lot better this year and we’ve had a great team spirit.

We also got the most points for bowling and batting in both of the divisions, which is great.

We’ve got the nucleus of a side that could challenge again in years to come and with all of the players that are coming through the academy into the first team, there’s going to be a lot more competition for places next year.

There are things to work on and a lot of people are going to have to cope with being upset when they don’t make the team but there’s a lot for us to build on for the future.

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