STOURBRIDGE Cricket Club are looking to progress this season despite an inconsistant start to their Birmingham and District League Division Two campaign.
The ambitious outfit have taken one win out of the three matches played so far.
Stour lost the opening match against Leamington Spa, who were relegated from Division One last season, then won their home contest against Coventry and North Warwickshire before last weekend's match against another relegated team from Division One, Brewood, was abandoned due to rain.
Stourbridge now hold fifth position in Division Two with 37 points. Brewood lead the pack with 47.
“We spent much of the close season reviewing the strength in the first team and taking a careful look at the potential in the club for developing young players,” said president Keith Jones.
“To a large extent we will continue to rely on our home grown players who have served the club so well over a decade although we have opened doors to local players who have approached the club this season.”
Two of the new signings Bilal Hassan and Ikram Mussadaq have already earned spots in the first and second XI respectively. Hassan’s all round ability will be a useful back up to the overseas all rounder and Stour’s match winner of the last three seasons, Audy Alexander. Mussadaq has strengthened the opening pace attack for the second XI and is a candidate to play in the first team alongside James Winders, who has been a loyal servant of the club.
Richard Bradley will continue to skipper the first XI that won promotions from the Worcestershire league in 2011 and then into Division Two of the Birmingham League in 2012. Having used 2013 to consolidate, skipper Bradley will have at his disposal a varied attack of pace and spin that will be effective in most conditions. Stour are also hopeful their youthful side will out class most teams in the division in the fielding department.
Chairman Harilal Patel added: “Richard Bradley has matured as captain over the past three seasons. His tactical ability and judgement calls have been sound.
"We are expecting all teams to do well this season thanks to the hard work put in by players and Dave Banks, the club’s senior coach.”