Cross look for big bounce after hitting the floor

Cross captain Steve Rimmer

Cross captain Steve Rimmer

First published in Sport by

WHO would be a captain? Gerrards Cross skipper Steve Rimmer must sympathise with England’s beleaguered leader Alistair Cook after seeing his side lurch from the sublime to the ridiculous in a matter of one week.

Rimmer would have been hopeful of a turnaround in fortunes when Cross ran then leaders Banbury so close two Saturdays ago.

But whatever new dawn he sensed was eclipsed last weekend when his team crumbled at home to bottom side Harefield.

They made just 136 on a benign wicket and were then unable to rescue the situation with ball in hand.

Harefield, winless until that point, chased them down with five wickets still standing to spike Cross to the floor of the Division One table and set alarm bells ringing at Dukes Lane.

Rimmer said: “We weren’t at the races all day. We were poor from start to finish and got what we deserved.

“It was disappointing after our performance against Banbury and we’ve got to have a look at ourselves. We need to make sure we’ve got 11 players on the pitch who will run through brick walls for us and if that’s there then fine, we’ll finish where we finish.

“There is no lack of intent and w have got talented cricketers. We are no worse in terms of skill set, but where we are getting found out is mentally.

“We need to make them smarter and more streetwise, but you can’t put old heads on young shoulders.”

Defeat on Saturday was the seventh in 11 games for Cross, who were promoted last season because of a league restructure despite finishing fourth in the old Division Two West.

Rimmer said: “We were thrown in the Premier League when we didn’t earn it.

“Had we finished top of Division One we might’ve been better equipped to handle it but we fell away pretty badly last season.

“Now we’ve got to take stock and get a big performance. And we’ve got to hope that big performance comes sooner rather than later and we can use it as a springboard.”

There were few signs on Saturday, when Cross crashed to 90-8 at lunch.

Billy Hunt (27) and Sam Westaway (21) helped them to 136 with a ninth-wicket stand of 46, but the damage had been done.

Rimmer said: “We had a perfectly good wicket to bat on but found ways to get out.

“It was a lack of concentration and determination, and our batting then translated to our fielding and our bowling wasn’t up to par either.

“I don’t want to heap pressure on a particular area of our game, but if we’re going to put 130 on the board we’re not going to get very far.”

Cross host Henley on Saturday.

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