South Hampstead struggling to strengthen their squad for new cricket campaign

Nish Patel will be a key figure in South Hampstead's Division Three campaign

Nish Patel will be a key figure in South Hampstead's Division Three campaign - Credit: Archant

South Hampstead will be relying on last season’s squad in the Middlesex County Cricket League as they bid to improve on last year’s seventh-placed finish in Division Three.

The Milverton Road club are yet to make a single signing and, although there are two recruits in the pipeline – including a West Indian slow bowler – there are unlikely to be any additions before Saturday’s trip to Barnes.

“There hasn’t been much activity in terms of new players,” SH’s secretary Ken James told Ham&High Sport. “It’s been poor in comparison with recent years, and very poor in comparison with the years before that. We certainly expected more activity than we’ve had.

“If we finish half way up the table we’ll probably be happy with that at this moment in time – but you never know what could happen, a few people might walk in through the door.

“You don’t need a lot of new players coming in – three or four make a big difference to any club.”

Given their struggle to strengthen from the outside, SH will be hoping to see improvements from their existing group of players.

“We would hope Nish Patel would continue his progress, he’s a very good batsman and bowler,” said James. “He’s only 22 years old and he’s a home-produced player so hopefully he’ll push on with his development.

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“We’ve got a bit of youth in Nish and his brother Avnish, and we’ve got a bit of experience in Paul Atherley and Algie Corbin, so we’ve got some decent players.”