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Team Talk STORY
Chapple ready and raring

Glen Chapple says Lancashire's preparations for the new county season are well on course as they get ready to fly out to Barbados for their two-week pre-season tour on Sunday.

“There’s still a lot of work to do, but we’re flying already. Fingers crossed, things continue to go according to plan,” said the Red Rose skipper. “We’ve trained really hard. It’s been good, and we've benefitted from it..

“We’ve challenged ourselves more than ever before, and now we’re looking forward to getting outside.”

Chapple believes the fact that more of the squad have spent their winter at home than ever before has helped, although it wasn’t planned to be that way.

He also stated: “This winter there has been a real focus on challenging the players to improve on their weaknesses along with keeping going with their strengths.

This has been coach Peter Moores’ first full winter working with the squad because he only took over in early February of last year. Chapple continued: “His ideas about training are superb in my opinion. He’s level-headed, he’s got good philosophies, and the lads all buy into it.”

The one-time England one-day international is set to embark upon his 19th season in the county game, but only his second as captain of his home county.

It is widely accepted that the all-rounder is getting better with age, especially with the ball in Championship cricket, and he is convinced that his personal performances hold the key to a successful stint as skipper.

“I’m enjoying the role I’ve got at the moment, and hopefully that will continue for a while yet,” he said.

“But I’ve got to make sure my performances stack up. To look after your own game is crucial because the lads we’ve got here are highly professional and will be doing everything they can to be successful.”

The Red Rose finished last summer with the second best win ratio in all forms of cricket behind Somerset, yet neither side managed to end the summer with a trophy under their belts.

“We easily played good enough cricket to win things, but the key is to play well enough in the big games,” continued Chapple. “If you have a league format culminating in a final it means nothing if you win 15 out of 15 and then lose the final.

“We got close in the one-day competitions last year, but we lost one big game when we were outplayed (Hampshire in the Friends Provident Trophy semi-final). Then there was the bowl out in the twenty20 and in the Championship we played some good stuff.

“While I think we played some decent cricket last year, I think we can improve.”

Graham Hardcastle
Top Photo: Simon Pendrigh

Above Photo:
(c) Lancashire CCC Ltd