Date: 14th Nov 2018
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Date: 12th October 2017


A Paul Edwards copyright exclusive for L&DCC Official Website.

With thoughts on 2018

Like hundreds of players and supporters in the Liverpool Gin Liverpool Competition, the Colwyn Bay skipper, Sion Morris, loves his cricket. But, like most of them, he is ready for a break.
Even playing first or second team cricket is a substantial commitment; captaining a team is even more time-consuming. So stepping back for a month or two and doing other things will be very welcome. There will be plenty of time to climb the walls when the withdrawals kick in come December and January, and pre-season training arrives soon enough for almost all players. In the meantime there is player recruitment, committee meetings, club dinners...
And as Morris relaxes into autumn he can reflect on one of his club’s most successful seasons. In contrast to 2016, when Colwyn Bay were fighting to avoid relegation from the ECB Premier League, Morris’s team finished a very creditable fourth, winning 12 of their 22 games and 10 of their last 14. They became one of the league’s form horses.
“I was delighted with the whole season,” said Morris. “To finish fourth was a fantastic achievement considering we are not massive spenders and struggle to recruit from anywhere east of Chester.”
Colwyn Bay’s improvement was, in part, the result of a significant policy change at the club. Instead of recruiting one of the fastest guns in the East, as they had done so often in the past, club officials signed the Indian batsman, Rumesh Buddhika, who made 734 runs.  They also persuaded Will Higginson to make the short trip from Northop Hall and welcomed Patrick Leach back to Penrhyn Drive.
“What we did over the winter was strengthen the batting with the recruitment of Will and the reintroduction of Patrick into the squad,” said Morris. “We’ve only signed an overseas batsman twice in my time at the club because we needed a seamer but we were able to sign a batsman this year.
“Rumesh missed the last three games but he still scored 734 runs and at a pace which won games for us. We are in advanced discussions with him for next year and the hope is that we can get things boxed off in the next couple of weeks.”
This shift in approach clearly benefited Morris’s team. The batting was deep - Zak Gidlow and George Johansen also scored over 500 runs - and the bowling remained formidable, especially with the veteran slow left-armer Paul Jenkins taking 55 wickets
“Towards the end of the season, we got some real momentum going,” said Morris. “I got it wrong last year in that I thought having a gun seamer would leave us in mid-table, so we got a seam bowler who took 65 wickets and we nearly got relegated.”
“To challenge for the league we now need one more batter and a seamer, but we are not going to spend loads of money on that because we don’t think it’s the right thing to do and we have players who have done it for us this year and last.”
One players whose skills will not be on display at Penrhyn Avenue next year is Jordan Evans, who has decided that the 550-mile round trip from Arbroath, where he is serving in the Royal Marines, is a little too much.   
“For us to have got 16 games out of Jordan when he had  that sort of trip for each of them was much appreciated by everyone at the club,” said Morris. “Nobody can question his commitment in the past nor the decision he’s taken now.  We’ll try and replace Jordan but if we can’t, everyone will move up one.”  
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