New Glamorgan coach Matthew Mott has given hope to veteran Robert Croft that he has a significant role in his plans in all forms of cricket this summer.
Over the last three seasons under Matthew Maynard, who resigned as director of cricket in November, the former England off spinner had limited opportunities – especially in one-day cricket.
Maynard had questioned 40-year-old Croft’s ability in the field and made it known that Dean Cosker, the slow left armer, was the number one spinner in the Glamorgan line-up.
But Mott, who arrived from Australia just in time to link up with his new charges ahead of the new season, insisted he has started his three-year contract with a clean slate as far as players’ reputations are concerned.
“The beauty of it for the players is that I certainly won’t have any favourites coming in,” said Mott. “Players will be judged on how they perform. Obviously past records come into it but for the guys who feel they didn’t get much of a go last season this is a great opportunity for them to put their hand up and show what they can do.
“I don’t think age has anything to do with it. Where I come from in New South Wales we were playing 17-year-olds. Whether they are 17 or 47 it doesn’t matter if they are performing.
“That is especially the case as a spinner in county cricket – people tell me you need some good spin options with so much cricket being played.” On Croft he said: “He’s going to be an enormous player for Glamorgan this year I think.”
Mott has eventually arrived from Down Under after being delayed by red tape and is as best prepared for the new season as possible. “It’s great to be here and finally put faces to names,” said Mott, who enjoyed four successful years at the helm of the NSW Blues.
“The wonders of modern technology have helped me keep in touch. I have been on Skype talking with the coaching staff and Alviro (Petersen) and myself have been in regular contact so I feel as if I have had a pretty good handle on things.
“Ideally, I would have liked to have been here a lot earlier, but we don’t live in an ideal world and I had to fulfil my contract with New South Wales.”
Mott has taken charge of a side looking to put the events of a turbulent winter behind them. “I am looking forward to the challenge. We have plenty of talent here and hopefully myself, Alviro and the senior players can drive the group and get the best out of them,” he added.
“For the first month it will be a case of getting to know the boys and seeing how they tick — that is something you can’t really do during pre-season anyway.
“You need to see them in the heat of battle and how they play their games. It is going to be an enthralling month of getting to know them.”