Cork: Hants have leaders for the future

Dominic Cork isn't too stressed as to who will succeed him as Hamsphire captain
Dominic Cork isn't too stressed as to who will succeed him as Hamsphire captain
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Dominic Cork believes Hampshire have a wealth of potential candidates to succeed him as captain – when the time comes to stand down.

The former England star, who turns 40 in August, has been handed the skipper’s job for the 2011 season as former captain Dimi Mascarenhas recovers from his ongoing Achilles problem.

Cork signed a new one-year contract at the end of last season after joining the Rose Bowl outfit in 2009.

While the former Lancashire man currently has no immediate plans to retire from cricket, the time will eventually come when Cork decides to pursue another career.

But he believes manager Giles White has plenty of options at his disposal from within his squad when he starts his search for the next Hampshire skipper.

Cork said: At the moment, the club has given it to me for 2011 and I’m sure they will be looking to get the right man for 2012 when the time is right – whether I’m still here or whether they still want me to do it.

‘You look at the likes of Jimmy Adams.

‘He would be up there to succeed as Hampshire captain but you can look at younger players coming through as well in people like James Vince – although he’s a young man who has to concentrate on his batting.

‘There are also the guys who have done it before in Dimi and Nic Pothas. They have captained before and they could well be the captain again.

‘But there are plenty of good people at this club who are very good players and good characters as well.’

Having been in the county game for two decades, Cork probably doesn’t need to seek advice or follow anyone’s lead on captaincy these days.

But he will be keen to emulate former England skipper Nasser Hussain and his old Derbyshire mentor Kim Barnett – the two captains he rates as the best he has played under.

He said: ‘Probably two stick out for me – Nasser Hussain and Kim Barnett.

‘Those two were different types of characters but were both batsmen who were very motivated to lead from the front.

‘Nasser, in particular, was quite a ruthless captain and he would be very up and honest with people – I think that’s what I will be like.

‘I want to perform well individually and push the side forward on a professional basis.

‘As captain, you want to give people confidence. If this game was so easy, we would win everything.

‘There will be times when people’s form or confidence dips and that’s where it’s down to me to help.’

With his ambition to captain the side to the LV County Championship crown, first on the agenda for Cork is to get to the bottom of the county’s recent slow starts to the season.

He said: ‘We all want to win the Championship and it’s something we need to improve on.

‘It’s definitely something we need to start more strongly at.

‘Over the past two seasons we’ve been slow starters and it’s something as captain that I want to eradicate.

‘So when we play Durham in our first game, whether we bat or bowl, we start well – that’s the most important thing to me and we carry on how we finished last year.

‘The vision of the club is to be successful in all forms of the game.

‘With the squad we’ve got now and the youngsters we’ve got coming through, it’s about the development of them as players and also the develop-ment of the team.’