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Strength of Haverhill Cricket Club's first squad enough without overseas player, according to vice chairman Greg Street

Haverhill Cricket Club vice-chairman Greg Street has said the decision was made not to pursue an overseas cricketer for their 2019 league campaign.

Street said the Marshall Hatchick Two Counties Championship side had considered numerous applications from prospective oversea amateurs in the off-season and had been looking for an opening bowler to boost their chances as they return to Division One.

But enquiries quickly wrapped up for the club with the arrival of Raj Singh from East Anglian Premier League club Cambridge – formerly known as Cambridge Granta – alongside the re-signing of Luke Youngs, who moved from EAPL’s Mildenhall last season.

Haverhill winners of the Suffolk Cup T20 Finals Day Picture Mark Westley. (8736808)
Haverhill winners of the Suffolk Cup T20 Finals Day Picture Mark Westley. (8736808)

“It was about getting an opening bowler,” he said. “And, at the end of the day, Raj is what we needed. If circumstances had been different, we might have explored the overseas option, but Luke and Raj are pretty much the equivalent.”

Youngs was the highest scoring batsman in the Two Counties Championship last term, with 1,041 runs from his 22 matches. He was one of only two players in the entire league to hit more than 1,000 runs as he enjoyed an average knock of 61.24 runs per innings, which saw him undefeated on five occasions.

As well as the first team, the club will once more be contesting the Suffolk T20 Cup – having been crowned champions for the first time ever last season.

Dan Pass will captain a first team in the cup for teams in the EAPL through to Division Three, while Ben Wilkins will captain a second team in the Suffolk Plate, a new parallel contest for sides at Division Four and below.

They will also have a second team in Division Three, due to travel to Bury St Edmunds II in their first match of the season on Saturday (12.30pm), as well as a third team in Division Nine West. Street believes the second team will find Division Three tough, with a number of ‘very strong’ looking sides.

“We want them to be as close as possible to our first team as they are the support,” he said. “So it’s crucial they maintain that Division Three status, but it’s going to be tough for them, there’s some very strong sides in that league.

“The squad changes a lot, so a mid-table finish would be a fantastic achievement. We would also like to see the third team compete for promotion and we think they have the ability to achieve this.

“And obviously we will try to win back-to-back Suffolk Cups too.”

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