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Hornchurch Cricket Club all set for Lashings All Stars but Roy Smith’s focused on Shenfield Cricket Club

PUBLISHED: 17:00 22 July 2016

Roy Smith of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Roy Smith of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

Big week ahead for the Harrow Lodge Park club and Roy Smith is looking forward to playing in two important matches

Hornchurch captain Roy Smith will not be taking Shenfield for granted tomorrow (Saturday) in the Essex League Premier Division.

While the Harrow Lodge Park club were beating Colchester last weekend, Shenfield were stunning 2015 league champions Chelmsford.

It was the perfect warning ahead of Hornchurch making the trip to their local rivals and Smith knows what his team will come up against.

But he still remains full of belief that his squad can keep on fighting for the Premier Division title.

“One thing I would say is that Shenfield are a bit of a bogey team for Chelmsford. I believe they’ve beaten them twice already this season,” said Smith.

“That is what I’m trying to believe anyway, but I know they are a dangerous side and more than a match for anyone.

“We won’t underestimate them or any other team in the division because we’ve all shown we can beat each other.”

Although this is Hornchurch’s first season back in the Premier Division since 2005, they have settled with ease and are in the race to win the title with Wanstead.

Smith believes the club that is the most consistent will be celebrating come the end of the campaign on September 3.

He added: “We definitely won’t underestimate Shenfield because the difference between the team that finishes first and second is being consistent. The one that doesn’t slip up is the one that wins the title.”

Away from the pressure of trying to come out on top in the title race is Hornchurch’s match with Lashings All Stars next Thursday (July 28).

Smith’s men will play host to the team which has billed itself as the ‘World’s Greatest Cricket Club’. The match at Harrow Lodge Park starts at 4pm and Hornchurch will go head-to-head with the All Stars in an exciting T20 encounter.

“That will be a great day and I’m hoping the weather is nice for it. I believe we have filled 25 to 30 tables already so it will be a nice occasion for the club,” said Smith.

“I think all the ex-pros are coaching the kids in the morning, before we have a lunch prior to the match. I’ve not been involved in one before so I’m really looking forward to it.”

Hornchurch don’t know what team the All Stars will bring, but for a game at Amersham tonight (Friday) they include the likes of India’s Wasim Jaffer, Pakistan’s Yasir Arafat, Monty Panesar, once of Essex, and ex-England fast bowler Ryan Sidebottom.

Smith believes the likes of South African Herschelle Gibbs and West Indian Gordon Greenidge might feature against his team.

Whoever the All Stars select, it is sure to be a fantastic day at Harrow Lodge Park with family entertainment during the day plus a BBQ, with Geoff Miller OBE featuring as a dinner speaker in the evening.

“Hopefully the likes of Greenidge and Gibbs can play, but I’m not sure what squad they are bringing down to be honest,” said Smith.

“If the weather is nice we could see a massive crowd which would be great for everyone involved. People that like cricket can wander over and see a few ex-stars in action and enjoy a cold drink!”

But before Hornchurch host what will certainly be a brilliant event, they will hope to keep their title challenge on track by beating Shenfield and close the gap between themselves and leaders Wanstead.


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