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Tom Taylor in the vanguard

Ticknall's Tom Taylor (pictured), as well as being perfect for headline writers of an alliterative bent (but I can do much better...) may not make his debut against Kent tomorrow, but has pushed himself to the forefront of the exciting crop of seam bow...

Tom Taylor

Ticknall’s Tom Taylor, as well as being perfect for headline writers of an alliterative bent (but I can do much better…), may not make his debut against Kent tomorrow, but he has pushed himself to the forefront of the exciting crop of seam bowling talent in the club’s academy.

I suspect that his senior debut will not be long delayed, especially if he keeps up his current levels of performance and progress, but the likes of Ben Cotton, Greg Cork, Will Davis and Jony Marsden will all be pushing hard in the coming months to force themselves into the senior reckoning. So to will Matt Higginbottom, who did well on limited opportunities last year.

They face a tough task, because Messrs Groenewald, Palladino and Footitt are fine purveyors of the art of seam bowling. They are not going to give up their places willingly and nor should they, but it is unrealistic to expect them to stay fit and play in all the cricket over the next four to five months.

With Jonathan Clare not bowling at present and Mark Turner whole-hearted without the results so far, these lads are realistically only an injury away from the big time. If they ever needed an incentive to work at their games, I’d reckon that is it.

It will be an exciting time for players and fans, but as fans we must be patient and understanding. There will be days when things go their way, their bowling is economical and wickets fall. There will be others where, like most bowlers, the radar isn’t quite locked on and they come up against batsmen of experience who milk them steadily and professionally. Such is the great game of cricket and it is one of the things that makes it so.

Mind you, I look forward to the day that I can write ‘Ticknall’s Tom Taylor trims tentative tail. And if any of you use that as an example of alliteration in your English class, you will drop me an e mail, won’t you?

In the Premier League today, Ben Slater got a good 90 for Chesterfield, where a potentially tight finish against Ticknall was ruined by the rain. Meanwhile, Tom Knight got four wickets for Swarkestone, for who Wayne White hit an 18-ball 43.

Sadly, there was only a single for Wes Durston in Ockbrook’s win over Spondon. I hope he rediscovers his mojo sometime soon as our best T20 batsman of the past few summers. As things stand, he’ll need a little faith from Graeme Welch to get into that side for the first game against Lancashire.

More immediately, I hope we make a good start against Kent tomorrow. Good luck to the lads and also those at the IPro, where a Rams win would do just dandy.

Fingers crossed…

Published with permission from Steve Dolman.

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