Stalwart Peck captaining Upminster again, but doesn't expect another lengthy spell
PUBLISHED: 17:00 08 May 2019
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The Shepherd Neame Division One club are hoping to make a much better start this year compared to 2018
When Ollie Peck was last captain of Upminster on a permanent basis, he took the team up from Essex League Division Two all the way to the Premier Division.
Peck took over in 2004 and stepped down 10 years later having been a major part of a largely successful time for the club.
Although not captain in 2010, he was for every other campaign and while one relegation occurred on his watch, Peck could be very proud of his spell as skipper.
Although he is in the role again this season, it isn't the start of another memorable decade in charge.
"I'm definitely looking forward to being captain again and it was good fun towards the end of last year," Peck said.
"Alan (Ison) has still got work commitments on Saturdays which preclude him from doing it, so I'll fill in for a year."
Midway through 2018, Peck took the reins from Nicky Ison, who was sidelined with injury.
He managed to guide Upminster to a mid-table finish in Division One when relegation had been a genuine worry.
A sixth-placed berth was a good achievement, especially given the slow start the club made and they also reached the semi-finals of the Essex T20 Cup.
Peck added: "The club is doing okay, I think we are pretty happy with where we are and we are looking to consolidate.
"We have the same team as last season pretty much, so we are looking forward to playing again and hopefully bringing more of our youngsters through.
"It would be great to bring some second and third-teamers into the side by the end of the season."
Upminster won eight of their 18 games in Division One, but all of those came during their final 10 league matches.
It shows what can be achieved by this squad, especially if people like Alan Ison, Shahbaz Butt and John Curtis show their quality consistently.
Yet while Peck and everyone at the club would love to go up, they also have an eye on the future.
He said: "We have a few players who have played at a higher standard, like Alan, and he would probably still be the captain if it wasn't work commitments.
"We also have a couple of other youngsters coming through who could definitely do the captaincy when they have a little bit more experience, so obviously the opportunity to bring a few younger players through this season will help us do that."