Captain Matthew Walker: Leaders Colne’s job is only half complete

Colne CC professional James Price
Colne CC professional James Price

Matthew Walker says the season has gone better than anybody could have expected so far as Colne sit at the top of the tree in Division Two at the halfway point.

A 24 run win over Enfield at The Horsfield was Colne’s ninth success in 11 league outings in the second tier, a return that has opened up a 13-point advantage over second place Haslingden.

The second instalment of the 2019 campaign begins at The Worswick Memorial Ground where they’ll take on Rawtenstall.

“We thought we had a decent chance of performing well at this level, but to be top at the halfway stage is better than what we could have imagined,” said Walker.

“It’s very pleasing, but we’re not getting carried away because we’re only halfway there. There are plenty of games still to play and everything can change.

“There have been some pleasing performances for many of the lads in the side, both with bat and ball.

“There have been a number of match-winning performances each week. We’ve been consistent and that has put us in the position that we’re in. There’s still room for improvement as well.”

After missing out on the T20 knockout phase by virtue of net run rate, having been beaten by eight wickets against JWL Founders Group winners Rishton, professional James Price continued to show his class.

The South African all rounder, who had made 55 from 28 balls on Friday evening as Colne were bowled out for 136, top scored with a league best 129 at home to Enfield, passing 500 runs for the season in the process, as they closed on 238-8.

Speaking about the club’s paid man, who also took 3-34, Walker said: “He’s doing really well.

“He did exactly what he needed to do on Sunday; we all know that he’s more than capable of doing that.

“He’s scored a hatful of runs so far and he’s chipping in with the ball.

“He’s doing everything that’s required as a professional. We’re really pleased with him, he’s put us in good positions in games and that’s helped us to secure the results we’ve been achieving.

“His performances take a lot of pressure off other people at times. He top scored on Sunday, he had a fantastic innings, and that fills the amateurs with confidence.

“In that scenario you can start contributing in a partnership and, as a result, the team does extremely well. He’s been given people pointers in training, helping them improve their technique, and little things like that can have a massive impact.

“That reflects in the team’s performances. He’s good to have around the club.”