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Walsham-le-Willows Cricket Club captain wants to see improvement in this season's Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship Division Three

On the eve of the 2019 season getting under way, Walsham-le-Willows captain Liam Bryant has encouraged his players to show that they have learned some lessons from last term.

A newly-promoted Walsham initially made a bright start to life in Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship Division Three, winning all of their first six outings.

However, they lost the next five and remained relatively inconsistent until the end of the campaign, eventually finishing in fifth position.

CRICKET - Brockley (Batting) v Walsham le Willows (Bowling)..Pictured: Liam Bryant bowls...PICTURE: Mecha Morton. .. (8473782)
CRICKET - Brockley (Batting) v Walsham le Willows (Bowling)..Pictured: Liam Bryant bowls...PICTURE: Mecha Morton. .. (8473782)

With a season’s experience at that level behind them, Bryant is now eager to see some improvement, particularly with the bat.

“If you had offered me the end result at the start of last season I would have taken it, but after the way we started – only to fall apart a little bit midway through – it is a little disappointing not to have finished higher,” he said.

“Our boys are perfectly capable of playing at this level – they showed that numerous times last year.

“We just need to take a bit more responsibility at times and show better situational awareness.

“You cannot always go out and thrash it from the first ball, especially if you are something like 30-5. That is when you have to come in, get your head down and dig in.

“You can bowl and field as well as you like but if you have put less than 100 runs on the board you are not going to win many games.

“It comes down to showing that we have learned some lessons from last year. If we can do that we have every chance of finishing higher than we did in 2018 and that would be great.”

Walsham are likely to be without wicketkeeper/batsman Steve Owston, who has relocated to the Cambridge area and is expected to join another team more local to him.

Bryant has conceded that it is a blow, but believes it has given a chance for others to prove their worth.

“Steve’s consistency has been massive for us, as well as the way he can weigh up a situation,” added the skipper.

“It is one of those where you do not realise just how good he is until you do not have him.

“But it is now down to the boys in the top three or four – myself included – to make up for it.”

Joe Scarce, who was leading run-scorer in Division Six for Sudbourne last season, has joined Walsham and is likely to take over from Owston behind the stumps, while Australian all-rounder Ben de Carvalho is set to arrive later in the summer.

Walsham get under way at Long Melford tomorrow (12.30pm).

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