16th Jan, 2019

INTERVIEW: Moseley coach targets strong return to Birmingham Premier League

CRICKET: MOSELEY coach Sohail Mohammed hopes his side can use their newly found confidence to solidify their spot in the Birmingham Premier League.

A rollercoaster season ended in promotion glory last year as Moseley finished second in Division One of the Birmingham League structure, just 11 points short of league champions Smethwick.

And their presence in the top flight of the BPL will come as a boost to the club as Sohail looks to inspire the next generation of cricketers at the Shirley-based ground.

Speaking to The Observer, Sohail admitted the club reached its aim this season by gaining promotion to the top flight.

He said: “We’re pleased to get out of the Division One after six years. It will be good to be competing in the top tier again, that was our aim at the start of the season.

“At the start of the season we did back ourselves to earn promotion. We had good strength in depth across all areas.

“Myself and John set expectations for each player so we had the structure needed to win the league.

“The lads really upped their game this season.

“Naqaash Tahir really helped the cause as did Usman Awan and Freddie Eburah – bowling was our strength this season.

“The first five games in a season are always important and we performed well in those. We had a little hiccup mid-way through the season but we always had great belief.”

The hard work has only just started for Moseley though as the club prepares to take on some of the region’s top cricketers.

Players including former England man Dominic Ostler, New Zealand international George Worker, and Indian import Prerak Mankad all featured in last year’s league.

And coach Mohammed didn’t rule out the possibility of bringing in new players himself.

He said: “We are considering bringing in some other players. All the preparations will start in late January.

“Fitness is a priority before then. We are looking at getting the lads fitter by using strength and conditioning.

“The youngsters have performed well in the second and third teams this season, some may step up to first team action this year if needed.

“Often we will call some of the young lads in to train with the first team.

“It benefits them and the older players feel like they’re giving something back to the club by teaching the next generation.”

One man Moseley will miss next season is skipper John Williams, who is taking time out of the sport.

Williams guided Moseley to 12 wins from 20 games – the most crucial being Moseley’s ten wicket win against Walmley on the final day of the season to secure promotion.

The outgoing skipper said: “Since taking over as captain I feel the side has made significant progress.

“Our aim was always to gain promotion this year.

“While I’m disappointed we didn’t go up as champions, I’m proud of the team and delighted the club will be back in the Premier League.”

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