Bexhill Cricket Club achieved its highest league finish in 18 years last summer and the aim is to do even better this year.
Johnathan Haffenden’s side came an excellent fourth in the Sussex Premier League last term and the club is keen to continue its year-on-year progress in 2016. Bexhill will begin their league campaign by making the long trip to Billingshurst today (Saturday).
“It’s not a one-off season and we need to keep progressing,” said Haffenden, ahead of his second successive season as captain. “We want to try and improve our position from last year.
“I don’t know why you would ever want to stop progressing and if your ambitions aren’t to win the league, you would probably question what your role in the league is.”
Although Ashar Zaidi won’t feature this year having been released by Sussex at the end of the 2015 campaign and Dean Crawford hasn’t returned for a third season as overseas player, Bexhill’s squad has a similar look to it and club legend Sam Roberts has stepped in as coach.
“We’ve got a good young side and our coach wants to win it,” continued Haffenden. “He will give us all the support and coaching we need, but it’s down to us to do it on the pitch.
“There’s some top sides (in the division), but we’ve shown last year we can compete against them; we’ve just got to go that one step further.
“We’ve got (key all-rounder) Callum Guest available more this year and I think we’re going to shape up very well, but we need to make sure we’re at the races every week.”
Bexhill will travel north-west tomorrow eager to rediscover the winning formula after defeats in the Gray-Nicolls Sussex T20 Cup and ECB National Club Championship last weekend.
“I wouldn’t say it was a setback, maybe a reality check,” added Haffenden. “It’s a horrible feeling sitting in the dressing room after being beaten twice and I don’t want it to happen again this week.
“It was good to get outside and play some competitive cricket, but we wanted to win both games so it’s very disappointing not to have done so. There’s a lot of things we can learn from this weekend that we have to put right next weekend.”
Haffenden was anticipating an interesting selection meeting this week, with around 15 players pushing for a place in the XI.
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