Essex League Division One: Upminster look to enjoy their cricket again after tough year in the Premier Division

PUBLISHED: 14:00 11 May 2018

Nick Ison (centre) celebrates a wicket for Upminster (pic Mick Kearns/TGS Photo)

Nick Ison (centre) celebrates a wicket for Upminster (pic Mick Kearns/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 8450 946026

It could be a season of transition after Matt Tigg departed during the winter along with several other first-teamers

Nicky Ison wants Upminster to have fun in the Essex League Division One this season after a tough campaign last year.

The all-rounder has stepped up to replace Matt Tigg as captain after Tigg decided to leave the club at the end of 2017.

Ison has been at Upminster for a number of years and played a part in their Premier Division campaign last season where they finished bottom with 118 points.

It was a tough year but despite relegation, they are keen to get back into the swings of things this weekend.

Upminster’s new captain Ison said: “It will be a good challenge this year in Division One after relegation in 2017.

“We have sadly lost four players over the winter, but we’ve got two in and hopefully they make a difference on the bowling front.

“It will be a fun year, but of course a tough one because a lot of clubs have improved and added to their squads.”

Tigg’s departure will weaken Upminster’s attack and they’ve also lost Alex Kirkpatrick plus talented young brothers Julian and Connor Whetstone.

Despite seeing the foursome depart, with the latter two returning to divisional rivals Hutton, Ison has no hard feelings.

He added: “Julian and Connor will be a big loss because they are good players and they will make Hutton a much stronger side.

“I’m looking forward to facing them this season and there are no hard feelings towards any of the players who have left us.

“Matt has joined East Molesey. He lives in Surbiton, so this has been on the cards for a couple of years and we knew it would happen eventually.

“Alex has also left to join a club in Middlesex, so it’s another one where it’s to do with where the player lives.”

But with departures, comes replacements and Ison’s excited about the two new players the club have brought in this winter.

He added: “We have brought in Ejaz Khan from Old Brentwoods. We have been lacking in the seam department and he will come in and fill the void.

“Ejaz is a very experienced player and has played in the Essex League for numerous years and been at Chingford in the past, so he will be very useful.

“We also have a new young left-arm spinner in Muhammed Rahim. He is a young respectable spinner and will add a bit of variety to our attack.”

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