In the second of two interviews, Billy Godleman gives a Captain’s perspective on the 2017 season and looks ahead to 2018.
The Club Captain concluded his review of the season by discussing the One-Day Cup, before setting out aims for the close season and the 2018 campaign.
Although there were standout performances in the 50-over format from the likes of Ben Slater and Alex Hughes, Godleman admits the county fell short and hopes to target a knockout place next season.
He said: “It’s always disappointing to not reach the knockout stages, but I think for the resources we had it was a fair reflection on where we were as a team. We played some really good cricket particularly with the bat, but again there was some gaping holes in some of our new ball bowling.
“I think having it in a block is helpful because you can get the squad focusing on the 50-over format. It’s a format the guys enjoy playing as there is a little bit more freedom and they can go out there and play some shots, and the guys with the ball go experiment a bit more with their variations.”
Highlighting new ball bowling as a problem area in the 50-over format, Godleman says strengthen the bowling unit is a target for the winter to help benefit all forms heading into 2018.
He added: “We always want to strengthen our squad, both through recruitment and from within.
“I think a real key area on reflection from this year is the new ball bowling. Ideally we would like to have a couple of experienced, highly-skilled new ball bowlers across all forms. This would be very helpful for us, but we also understand that new ball bowlers is something all counties are on the lookout for.”
The Club announced last month that Kim Barnett will remain at the Club for 2018, providing guidance and support to the cricket staff, while also leading the winter recruitment.
Godleman said: “It’s fantastic news that Kim is staying on for 2018, not just for me personally, but I think for the whole Club and the whole playing staff to have his knowledge and experiences – but also his deep care and passion for the Club.
“We are really fortunate to have Kim, the role he plays for the Club is invaluable. He will be wanting to see continued development and that’s something we are all working towards for next year.”
He added: “Now the season is over, it is about making sure that we have some time away from the game as that is really important. It has been a real intense six months for everyone involved. We’ll then come back together at the start of November and get our minds together about the way we want to go about the next 12 months.”
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