Ilford captain Jacobs wants to stop giving oppositions so much respect
- Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo
Ilford captain Nigel Jacobs wants to stop giving opponents so much respect and take control of more games as they head into a clash with Old Southendian & Southchurch.
Jacobs’ side welcome Old Southendian to Valentines Park on Saturday as they look to bounce back from a 38-run defeat to Upminster on the opening weekend of the Hamro Foundation Essex League Division One season.
“They’ve got a couple of big-name players, Andrew McGarry has played a lot of cricket in the past, and Ahmed Khawaja has probably been their best player for the last few years,” the skipper said.
“We can’t or shouldn’t focus too much on them, I think perhaps in the past we’ve given too much respect to opposition's top players, obviously we have to be aware of them but focus on what we’re doing.
“We’ve got some of the best players in the league ourselves.
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“We’re still a little bit inexperienced, but I wouldn’t say anyone is that young any more, everyone is in their early 20s so it’s kind of the age now where everyone should know the game and how to perform.
“There is another exciting youngster called Usman Younas coming into the team, he did really well against Wanstead a couple of weeks ago, and he was unfortunate to miss out on selection."
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The batsman is focusing on the positives while making the areas they need to improve known to his team after the Upminster loss.
Alan Ison’s men scored 209-3 ffrom 35 overs, before Ilford could only manage 174-8 with Akhil Anil (50) and Mohammad Ahktar (30) leading the way.
“It was a good game, the conditions were hard to field and bowl at the beginning, then it probably got a little bit easier," added Jacobs.
“We did alright, we fell short, and there is a lot of areas to improve in but plenty of positives.
“He (Akhil) batted brilliantly, we lost three early wickets, but the way him and Mo Ahktar were batting we had a really good chance of winning.
“He played super confidently and positively, taking on the boundary runners, and hitting them for six.
“I’ve said this before that I think he is going to be one of the best players in the league and he showed that especially as he was playing at about 50 per cent because he is a bit injured.
“If he continues with that sort of form then I'm sure we’ll do really well.”