Shenfield crowned Essex six's champions
PUBLISHED: 17:00 25 April 2019
Shenfield were crowned champions of the annual Rod George Foundation six-a-side tournament at Castle Park at the weekend, writes Jacob Ranson.
The tournament has been held on behalf of the foundation in recent years, since the death of the former Colchester member.
And Shenfield came out on top with a squad including captain Roy Smith, Jack Potticary, Jack Newton, George Ballington, Tom Ballington, Cameron Spicer and Charlie Haddon.
Captain Smith, who took over the reins in the winter from long-serving skipper Jack Kliber, was pleased to see his young side capture some silverware ahead of their Shepherd Neame Essex League Division One campaign.
“It was a good little run out, we didn't have a bad side either, as we had a good young side,” said Smith.
“Baring in mind it was the first game and everyone was a bit rusty, everyone performed really well.
“All of them are 21 or under as well, which is pleasing.”
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The vastly-experienced batsman, who helped Hornchurch bag an Essex League treble last term, is confident in the youngsters' abilities going into the new season.
“We've not gone big on the transfers and bringing new players in, I think there is a lot of talent there, and it's about trying to bring them on and make them better if we can,” he added. “Unless you give the youngsters a go, then they're never going to get better.”
Six of the seven players who competed at the tournament are former Shenfield High School students who have come up through the ranks over the years.
“We get a lot of help from Shenfield School, there is plenty of talent at the club, so with a little bit of guidance in the right direction I think the club has got a good future,” said Smith.
Shenfield will host Leigh-on-Sea in the first round of the Essex League Cup on Saturday in their first fixture of the 2019 season.
And the winners of that tie will visit Hadleigh or Old Brentwoods a week later in the second round.
“We can't wait to get started, Leigh-on-Sea are in Division Three, but they'll be a half decent side,” added Smith.
“They'll be very competitive and certainly no walkover.”
*Brentwood host Benfleet in their own Essex League Cup clash at The Old County Ground, while Billericay travel to Epping and Hutton visit Chingford.