Rebuilding the priority
Cross captain refuses to get carried away Panthers worthy league champs
though and have strength in depth.”
In have come leg spinner Elliott Green, who has played minor county cricket for Shropshire, as well as top order batsman Alistair Birkby from High Wycombe and Aussie opener James Crosthwaite.
Birkby and Crosthwaite both got off to inauspicious starts against Cove, falling for a duck and two respectively as the hosts stuttered to 3-1 and 16-2.
But Sam Westaway (43) led a recovery which was carried on by the middle order, with Watson himself making 91, Jamie Hoddle unbeaten on 81 and Dan Hampton chipping in with a 40 ball knock of 51, as the Cross finished on 316-7 off 50 overs.
Bucks county player Hampton then displayed his all-round talents by taking 5-28 off 7.4
lot more overs, while Green showed why he has won county caps too by taking 4-37 off 7 as Cove were dismissed for 184.
Watson added: “We did well, although we didn’t think it would be as high a scoring game as it was. It was good to put a marker down for the year.
“We have guys in the middle order who can really smack it and put us in a position to win games, but Sam Westaway did the hard work when the ball was swinging around early on.
“Jamie Hoddle had his best ever innings – he will never see the like of that again.
“He is a brilliant ball striker and we have challenged him to take the shackles off this year.”
However, in the same division, it was not a good opening day for Amersham CC who, despite an unbeaten 81 from Andrew Viney, collapse to 192 all out before losing by six wickets to Datchet.
We have a young, adventurous side who just want to play attacking cricket, so who knows?”
CONSOLIDATION: Gerrards Cross captain Matt Watson says there is a two-year plan