Craig White has told Hampshire’s bowlers: We need to improve.
The bowling unit has performed well this season, with Hampshire still challenging on three fronts going into the final month of the campaign.
But last week’s Championship clash with Kent saw the visitors clock up a staggering opening stand of 252, which made the Hampshire attack look pedestrian for the first time this season.
Kent’s mighty total of 467 then heaped the pressure back on the Ageas Bowl batsmen and only a late rearguard action from Jimmy Adams and Danny Briggs saved the game.
And the former England all-rounder, who joined the club’s staff as bowling coach at the start of the season, believes the bowlers need to step things up ahead of the Championship clash at Gloucestershire, which starts today in Bristol (11am).
White said: ‘They are doing okay but I think there is room for improvement. I think the lads know that.
‘Throughout all of our disciplines, I think there is a bit to come, which is very encouraging.
‘We are still competing for three trophies at the moment and if someone had offered this position at the start of the year, we would have bitten their hand off.
‘We’ve bowled well but we’re after a little bit more from them.’
Hampshire are hoping to have Neil McKenzie back in the side.
The hamstring strain he suffered in the closing stages of the Friends Life t20 win at Nottinghamshire was only minor but it kept him out of the Kent clash.
The South African will undergo a late fitness test but team manager Giles White is optimistic of having him back in the ranks.
White said: ‘It was a grade one strain for Neil and that is less serious than it could have been.
‘They usually take about a week to clear up, so we’re hoping to have him back in the side for the trip to Gloucestershire.’
– STEVE WILSON