Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

Mason Praises “awesome Efforts” Of Bowlers In Helping To Seal Promotion

Bowling Coach Matt Mason has hailed the "awesome" efforts of the Worcestershire attack in helping to clinch promotion to Division One of the LV = County Championship.

Mason is full of praise for the attitude of the bowlers in overcoming the retirement of paceman Alan Richardson and their efforts as a unit in complimenting the skills of spinner Saeed Ajmal and then plugging the gap after his departure in mid July.

Saeed ended with 63 wickets but Jack Shantry (54), Charlie Morris (49) and the combined tally of Gareth Andrew and Joe Leach (53) have also made large contributions in the Championship with one game still remaining.

Mason said: "As bowling coach, I couldn't be more proud of them. They've been awesome all year.

"That's all you can ask for, contributions throughout the year and consistency.

"When Richo left, I didn't have to say a lot because they all saw it as an opportunity.

"There was a spot available so it created some competition. Everyone wanted to take that responsibility that Alan left behind.

"Charlie Morris has stepped up with Jack Shantry and done that particularly well.

"As much as people miss Alan in terms of the person he was, and the character in the dressing room, in terms of cricket there was a chance for someone else to step up and I think that is what has happened this year."

Mason added: "I also thought they supported Saaed brilliantly, did their roles very well,and in his absence they stood up and worked together as a terrific unit to make sure we got the job done.

"It hasn't all been plain sailing and guys have struggled here and there as you do but they've always managed to bounce back and do the job."

Mason has revealed the never wavering belief in the side to overcome Surrey at New Road last week and seal promotion even when the visitors were 120-2 at lunch chasing a 217 target.

He said: "The belief in the dressing room at lunch-time was amazing. There were plans hatched, talk of getting through one end and keep attacking, keep attacking.

"There was never a doubt we could something special.

"Surrey in the past have collapsed in front of our eyes in games and in the first innings they lost six for 30 so there was a real feeling amongst the lads that it could be done.

"It was always going to be hard but they felt they could do it."