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Hornchurch Cricket Club's Mohib Shah excited for Buckhurst Hill meet in Essex League Premier Division says captain Roy Smith

PUBLISHED: 15:00 06 May 2016

The 2016 cricket season is underway (pic: Jonathan Brady/PA)

The 2016 cricket season is underway (pic: Jonathan Brady/PA)

PA/Press Association Images

Harrow Lodge Park outfit will play first match in the top flight since 2005 and look to start strongly

Hornchurch are looking forward to their Essex League Premier Division opener against Buckhurst Hill tomorrow (Saturday) and one member of their squad is especially excited.

Mohib Shah switched to Harrow Lodge Park during the winter after spending three seasons at Roding Lane.

Captain Roy Smith admits the ex-Buckhurst Hill player is ready for what will come his way and revealed one of the youngsters at the club is set to make their first-team debut this weekend.

“Mohib is looking forward to it, he will get a few words from them, but he’s a tough lad and will take it,” said Smith.

“We needed somebody like Mohib, a left-arm spinner, and he has bowled well so far for us this season. Ed Small will be making his debut as well. He’s only 16.

“He has been with the seconds. We haven’t got Chamikara Mudalige this weekend so we are giving Ed a chance, he’s another left-arm spinner.”

Tomorrow will see Smith’s Hornchurch team play their first match in the Premier Division since 2005.

It has been a long journey for the club to get back to the big time, but after lots of work in recent years, they have finally returned.

Smith admits it is great for everybody associated with the Harrow Lodge Park outfit, but warned it will not be an easy start.

He added: “We are looking forward to it, back in the big time again and everyone is excited because it is where the club wants to be.

“It won’t be easy. It’s going to be challenging, but it is great to be at home first up because it makes a difference to start there.

“Hopefully we can get a good result and then take it one game at a time. But if we can start well, we can get a bit more momentum, get the confidence up and see where it takes us.”

Smith’s men have started strongly again this year and won by seven wickets at home to Loughton in round two of the Essex League Cup last weekend.

The visitors were restricted to 170-8 and Jamie Sorrell (65) and Paul Walter (64) ensured the Hornchurch chase was always comfortable.

After facing Buckhurst Hill tomorrow, they turn their attention to the Royal London Club Championship where they travel to rivals Upminster on Sunday.

“It will be a good game, a local derby which everyone loves playing in and it is a quick break from the league so I’m sure both teams will enjoy it,” said Smith.

“We are confident and Upminster will be as well, so we won’t be underestimating them. Hopefully the weather is nice, we can bat first, get a big score and into the driving seat before getting the result we want.”

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