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Diss Cricket Club captain Lewis Taylor says side will ‘definitely look to be challenging’ at the top end of The Lacons Brewery Norfolk Cricket Alliance Division One

After his side gained the enjoyment for playing cricket again last season, Diss captain Lewis Taylor stated the club will ‘definitely look to be challenging’ at the top end of The Lacons Brewery Norfolk Cricket Alliance Division One this campaign.

Diss finished sixth in their first season back in Division One last year after relegation from the Premier Division in 2022.

Although it meant a drop down in divisions for the club, playing in Division One last term allowed Diss to regain their spark and love for the game. And, after a year to consolidate and regroup, Taylor hopes his side can make inroads up the standings this time around with the knowledge that they can beat anyone in the league on their day.

Diss captain Lewis Taylor
Diss captain Lewis Taylor

“To be honest we felt we could’ve easily finished a couple of places higher (last season), certainly challenging for promotion if a couple of games had just gone our way,” he said.

“We’re still quite positive about this season and we know where our strengths and weaknesses are. We’ll definitely look to be challenging again.

“Last year we just wanted to get back to enjoying our cricket after a tough season in the Premier Division. If we’re being completely honest, we didn’t have the squad to compete in the Premier Division on a week-to-week basis, we were facing quite a few heavy defeats.

Diss host Bradenham tomorrow in their opening game of the season. Picture: Mark Bullimore
Diss host Bradenham tomorrow in their opening game of the season. Picture: Mark Bullimore

“Last year was nice just to get back to that winning feeling.”

“It brought back a bit of enjoyment being able to compete in every game.

“In the Premier Division, we were going to grounds almost resigned to the fact, unless a couple of miracles happened, we weren’t going to win.”

Diss – who were unable to play any friendlies in the lead up to the curtain raiser due to weather conditions – go into this season with mostly the same squad as last year, but with the addition of Jordan Barber from Gillingham, ahead of their opening game at home to Bradenham tomorrow (12pm).

Diss finished sixth last season. Picture: Mark Bullimore
Diss finished sixth last season. Picture: Mark Bullimore

Their opponents, who Diss did the double over last campaign, finished second from bottom in the table last season but were reprieved from relegation.

“We feel like we’ve got a particularly strong squad, particularly with our batting line-up, it’s definitely one of the strongest in the league. However, we did suffer a coupler of losses that we shouldn’t have done either,” said Taylor.

“This season it will be much the same. If we can slightly outperform last year, we’ll be happy with that. I think that’s probably going to be the main goal.”

Meanwhile also in Division One, Old Buckenham get their campaign under way tomorrow when they welcome Swardeston II to Horry Panks Cricket Ground (12pm), who finished fourth last season.

Old Buckenham, captained by Robert Goodwin, sat fifth in the table at the end of last year and go into the new campaign with confidence after winning all three of their pre-season friendlies at home to Newmarket, Norwich and, most recently, Downham Stow.

In the Premier Division, Garboldisham start their new season with the visit of Downham Stow tomorrow (12pm).

Philip King’s side finished in seventh place last campaign – only 21 points above the drop zone – and will face a tough test tomorrow against a Downham Stow outfit who enjoyed a third-placed finish. Garboldisham head into this season, hoping to improve on the four victories collected in 2023, after two pre-season friendlies – a victory at home to Hethersett & Tas-Valle and a defeat at Woolpit.

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