Search

Royal London One-Day Cup: Matthew Walker hopes Kent have learned lessons from last season

PUBLISHED: 08:45 16 May 2018

Kent's Darren Stevens (left) coach Matt Walker, vice Captain Joe Denly, coach Allan Donald and Will Gidman (right) prepare for a team picture during the media day at the Spitfire Ground, Canterbury (pic Gareth Fuller/PA)

Kent's Darren Stevens (left) coach Matt Walker, vice Captain Joe Denly, coach Allan Donald and Will Gidman (right) prepare for a team picture during the media day at the Spitfire Ground, Canterbury (pic Gareth Fuller/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

Kent’s head coach Matthew Walker is telling his Spitfires squad to learn from last season’s harsh white-ball lessons ahead of Thursday’s start to their Royal London One-Day Cup campaign in Hove.

Walker’s side will travel to take on a Sussex Sharks outfit still smarting from Sunday’s three-day defeat in the Specsavers County Championship in Canterbury to a Kent side inspired by Matt Henry’s heroics with bat and ball.

Yet Walker is well aware the slate will be wiped clean once the sides walk out again at the 1st Central County Ground come 11am.

Walker’s warning follows Kent’s dismal showing in the 50-over tournament last season when Spitfires, under the leadership of then captain Sam Northeast, finished bottom of the nine-team South Group with a woeful playing record of one win from eight starts.

“One of the big things we’ve stressed coming into our white-ball cricket is for our leaders to show up out in the middle during games,” explained the 44-year-old coach. “You want your big-game players to drive the team on by example and from the front.

“With Joe Denly now leading the side in the absence of Sam Billings and the likes of Heino Kuhn and Matt joining the staff, I’ve seen glimpses of this happening already this summer.

“Those signs show up in different ways, players can lead in practice, in the dressing rooms during our team meetings or, and most importantly, out on the field. The crucial thing is, to see it happening.”

Other than improving the side’s leadership roles and on-field decision making, Walker has also stressed that his players must start to do themselves credit when it comes to their individual performances.

“It’s always an exciting time at the start of a new competition and I want the lads to really embrace that for motivation.

“I know there’s never a lot of turnaround time for the guys to switch from four-day cricket to the one-day games, but there’s no excuses there because it’s the same for every player and every club in the tournament.

“So, the Kent lads will have a few days to brush up on their white-ball skills before they need to go out and make it count.”

Walker added: “Last year we never really put a full game together. It wasn’t one particular area, it was just lack of consistency and a lack of basic, white-ball skills.

“I felt that we’d had this tag with the opposition that Kent are a decent side who can be a soft touch at times and that’s a reputation that we can only lose by playing tougher and winning games of cricket the hard way.”

On the selection front, acting captain Denly looks set to be without Australian-born all-rounder Grant Stewart, who hobbled out of Kent’s last game with a recurrence of a hamstring strain.

Seamer and white-ball specialist Mitch Claydon has recovered from his long-term hand injury, however, and could come into consideration after his return for the county second XI against Hampshire earlier this week.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Bexley Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Bexley Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Bexley Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Bexley news

Thursday, May 24, 2018

After achieving the mayor’s prestigious Schools for Success Award last year, Normandy Primary School has done it again.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Throughout the rest of May and early June, each of Bexley’s libraries will be hosting a series of free teddy bear events for children aged 2-4.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Kent will have four precious practice days this week to brush up on their white-ball skills before aiming to kick-start their Royal London One-Day Cup campaign for 2018 at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence on Friday.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Weybourne Care Home in Abbey Wood has recently been inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), and has received a ‘Good’ rating across all areas.

Monday, May 21, 2018

This morning, commuters across London, Kent and East Sussex travelled to work using services operating to Southeastern’s new timetable.

Monday, May 21, 2018

David Evennett, MP for Bexleyheath and Crayford, has been awarded a Knighthood by the Queen.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Plans for a discount food supermarket in Erith have been submitted to planning chiefs at Bexley Council.

Monday, May 21, 2018

A special ceremony was held at Harris Garrard Academy to mark its first academic year.

Most read news

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Bexley Times e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Show Job Lists

Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder