Once more into the unknown for Leatherhead and skipper Joblin

Not returning: Leatherhead’s overseas player Adrian Kritzinger from last season, who averaged 33 from 19 games, is staying in South Africa  	SP78030

Not returning: Leatherhead’s overseas player Adrian Kritzinger from last season, who averaged 33 from 19 games, is staying in South Africa SP78030

First published in Sport Wimbledon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Sports editor

Leatherhead CC skipper Matthew Joblin will not be changing a winning formula as his side prepare to walk into the unknown for the second consecutive season.

After back to back promotions as champions, the Fetcham Grove-based team take their debut bow in the Surrey Championship Premier Division at Reigate Priory on May 10.

Those previous titles came at a relative canter, and now Joblin is looking forward to testing his side against the best teams in the county.

However, while there have been changes on the player front, he insists the traditional Leatherhead ethos will remain and what will be, will be.

“We’re almost in the same situation as last year having never played in Division One before we were promoted, so it is very exciting,” he said.

“We have not set ourselves a target because we have no idea what to expect. We genuinely go into every game looking to win it, but because we have no idea what to expect I am sure there are going to be challenges ahead.”

He added: “In terms of membership, we’re probably one of the smallest clubs to have played Premier League cricket.

“Some teams might not know about us and that might work in our favour, but we’re not too worried about that – we’re just focusing on what we can do.

“We’re sticking with the same ethos of ‘go out there and enjoy your cricket’. We’re not going to change too much because it has worked well over the past three of four years.”

Leatherhead have lost last season’s overseas player in middle order batsman Adrian Kritzinger, who has taken up a new job in his native South Africa.

Coming in is Zimbabwean born seamer Nick van der Westhuizen, and top order batsmen Sonny Cott, an Ireland U17 international, and Chris Lyons.

Last weekend, in their first pre-season friendly, Leatherhead beat Ifield by six wickets with Lyons hitting 35.

They host Chessington this weekend, and Worcester Park on May 3 before the action begins for real.

Joblin said: “Everyone is getting excited about it and we really just want to get out there and start playing.

“We want to test ourselves against the best, the likes of Wimbledon, Sunbury and Weybridge – teams who have been in the Premier League for years.

“It’ll be interesting to see just how good we can become as a side.”

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