Colin Crosby Heritage Tours

At Last it`s the Cricket Season

Cricket lovers all over the country will be happy now, for at last the close season has ended and the new season is beginning.

I personally am a Leicestershire member . Having won the County Championship twice in the 1990s, Leicestershire finished firmly in bottom place last year. That does not mean, however, that things are looking bleak for 2010. Far from it.

Over the last few years, there has been a concerted policy of developing young players. The downside of this was an interminable collection of "Kolpak" players (overseas players signed taking advantage of a legal loophole) who allegedly helped on this development. Some of them were good, others considerably less so.

Now we have the excellent youngsters and a smattering of experienced English players, and personally I believe the signs are good.

James Taylor is an outstanding young player, and was awarded the accolade of Young Cricketer of the Year nationally in 2009. James is a very fine batsman, and others in that category are Josh Cobb, Matt Boyce and Greg Smith, while Shiv Thakor is yet to be given a try in the first team. Young bowlers include Nathan Buck, Alex Wyatt, Sam Cliff and Harry Gurney.

There is a new captain. Matthew Hoggard, formerly of Yorkshire and England, is looking forward to this role, while the famously tall opening batsman Will Jefferson, formerly of Essex (my home county) and Nottinghamshire, should give stability to the top of the order. Andrew McDonald joins from Australia as overseas player.

OK. Things are looking up. Here we go!