Adding quality to Somerset cricket

By WSFP reporter   |   Newsdesk   |
Sunday 13th March 2022 7:00 am
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Somerset captain Tom Abell and the rest of the county’s squad are in Abu Dhabi at a ten-day pre-season training camp.

“A fair few guys have had the opportunity to go away and play abroad this winter whereas others have been back here training indoors throughout,” said Abell before he left. “Everyone has applied themselves really well back here and we have all enjoyed the winter programme but, of course, now I think we are all looking forward to getting outside, getting onto the grass and playing competitive cricket.

“Essex are out there at the same time as we are so we have four days of cricket against them, which will be really good preparation as they are a top side.”

Regarding the two Australian overseas signings, batsman Matt Renshaw and fast bowler Peter Siddle, the skipper said: “They are two world class players and both are performing really well at the moment.

“I saw Matt Renshaw when I was out in Australia and he is chomping at the bit to get back to Somerset. He is very excited to be returning to the club, while Siddle is a world class performer and will bring his experience and that extra depth to our bowling attack.

“We know the quality of what we already have, and he just adds to that, and I think our younger bowlers will also benefit from having him around at the club.

“Matt was a great character and very popular, and is very hungry at the moment - I think he loved being here last time as much as we loved him.

“Peter Siddle is a quality signing. I have spoken to him and he is really looking forward to joining up with us.

“Hopefully both of our overseas players will be with us by early April. They have been playing Sheffield Shield cricket over in Australia so can hit the ground running, so fingers crossed we can get off to a good start.”

So how does the skipper think that Somerset will perform in 2022? “Last season until that final month we played some brilliant cricket and we know we have some quality in our team , so when you add a couple of world class players to that it bodes really well for us.

“It’s important to look at the summer as a whole and try to keep a bit of perspective. Nobody is more aware than ourselves that we fell short of the standards that we expect in that last month in 2021.

“However, equally in the first half of the season, we won a really tough group and played some unbelievable cricket during that time. We had some great wins in the championship and the progression in our T20 cricket was phenomenal really given the start we had in the comp to go on a reach the final.”

The captain added: “We are very ambitious and want to win things, which we didn’t quite manage to do, but there was so much good that did happen which shows what we are capable of when we get our processes right.”

Somerset return from Abu Dhabi next Thursday and play the first of the pre-season fixtures against Glamorgan at the Cooper Associates County Ground on Monday, March 21.

RICHARD WALSH

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