Black Cap duo having real Blast at Bears
JIM Troughton believes Grant Elliott and Colin de Grandhomme have brought a “sense of fun” to Birmingham Bears – and is excited to see where that spirit will take his team in the 2018 Vitality Blast.
Elliott and De Grandhomme are back in Birmingham and, along with fellow Black Caps star Jeetan Patel, will form the backbone of the Bears’ T20 team.
Last season all three were big contributors – Elliott as captain and all-rounder, De Grandhomme as big-hitting batsman and Patel as skilful spin bowler – as the Bears reached the final.
And while Patel’s merits have been benefiting the Bears for years, it was the arrival of his two New Zealand teammates that took the team’s T20 cricket to another level last year, believes first-team coach Troughton.
“T20 cricket is all about playing instinctively and enjoying it and that’s something Grant and Colin have really brought to the squad,” he said. “They have brought in a sense of fun and a sense of curiosity and if you mix that with the competitiveness and skills of people like Jeets, you’ve got a great mix.
“Grant and Colin have been with us for a couple of weeks now and joined us up in Durham last week for a bit of training and a catch-up with the guys.
“They were both brilliant for us last year, on and off the field. They have the perfect attitude, encouraging every player to free up and be fearless. That’s what T20 batting is all about, while as a bowler you have only got 24 balls to make an impact on the game so it’s about managing your emotions and executing under pressure.
“Sometimes a long-hop will get you a wicket and then a decent ball will go out of the park, but as long as you have got plans and variations you can give the batsman something to think about.”
says Jim Troughton, inset