Godleman proud of squad

Thursday 10th September 2020
& News
Photography by: David Griffin

Despite the disappointment of missing out on a Lord’s final, skipper Billy Godleman was able to look back on Derbyshire’s performances in the Bob Willis Trophy with pride and encouragement for the future.

Derbyshire went into the last match against Lancashire with a chance of making the final but failure to secure any batting points and defeat at Aigburth meant they were denied the chance to play for the trophy.

In the end, they were replaced by Yorkshire at the top of the North Group but overall, Derbyshire finished as the fifth best team in the tournament and demonstrated they can compete with the bigger counties.

Derbyshire’s campaign also has to be viewed in the context that all their games were away because the Incoratm County Ground is being used by the ECB as a bio-secure venue, and their bowling attack contained a number of inexperienced players.

No wonder then that Godleman was able to take satisfaction from the way his team performed over the five matches.

“After losing to Lancashire we are all really disappointed that we weren’t able to win and have the opportunity to play for silverware at Lord’s,” Godleman said.

“But when you take a deeper and broader view at what we’ve done as a group over the five games and take into account how many less experienced players, particularly bowlers, we’ve given opportunities to and some of the people we’ve had missing, I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve been able to achieve.

“To play Yorkshire, Lancashire and Nottinghamshire and play all our games away I think we’ve done really well. I think for the medium to long-term future along with the good results, I feel we’ve taken great strides in development that will help us going forward.

“I very much try and keep my focus internally on what we need to do to keep developing and improving so I’m really pleased with the manner that we’ve played across these games plus the added bonus of the experience that the less experienced players will have benefited from.”

Godleman has also come out in favour of the conference system as long as it does not mean a reduction in the number of first-class matches over a season.

“I’m a big fan of the conference format but with a couple of stipulations moving forward,” he said.

“I think the three conferences of six is a great way to keep more competitive cricket going for longer although I would have a strong preference for it not to be regionalised.

“If there was a way it could be done where there were three groups of six but it could potentially be seeded so we wouldn’t be playing the same northern group teams I think that would work nicely.

“My only other thought on this is that if you play home and away in a conference of six that would work out at 10 games and for me personally, and from speaking to other guys in the game, I wouldn’t want the number of first-class matches to drop.

“So if a way can be found where we play at least around 14 games that would be great.”

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