Weybridge out to make up for missed opportunity - time to learn the lesson

Croydon Guardian: Out: Weybridge captain Joel Pope is castled in his side’s defeat at Surrey Premier Division champions Wimbledon last summer 			 	SP73110 Out: Weybridge captain Joel Pope is castled in his side’s defeat at Surrey Premier Division champions Wimbledon last summer SP73110

Weybridge captain Joel Pope is hopeful his men can get over the finishing line this season in the Surrey Championship Premier Division.

The Hanger Hill side’s final day defeat to Guildford proved costly as they missed out on the title by only nine points after champions Wimbledon were deducted four points following their season ending win over Banstead.

A bonus point triumph might have seen Pope’s men, who had a slow start to the campaign for a second successive season, lift the title having narrowly escaped relegation 12 months earlier.

And the skipper hopes his men have learned their lesson.

“Wimbledon have won the league many times and they know what to do in that situation,” said Pope.

“We had not been in that position before so did not know how to win a league.

“Hopefully that experience will stand us in good stead.”

Click here for more build up to the start of the Surrey Championship season

If Weybridge, who lost three of their opening four games last summer, do push for the title it will be without the pace attack of Robbie Joseph and Henry Turner.

The pair were responsible for 42 league wickets between them last season but have both left the club with Joseph, 32, signing for Kent and Turner moving to live in Brighton.

“Losing those two will be a big blow to us, but we have brought in the former MCC young cricketer Barry Hooper and Durham University’s Chris Roper to replace them,” added Pope.

“We should have our Surrey youngsters Jack Winslade and Tom Curran back from the start of the season, which should help.

“We need to start well – that hasn’t happened for a while – because I don’t think we’ll win the same number of declaration games as we did last year.

“We need more from the limited overs matches, but we’re in good shape.”

Weybridge will host league new boys Valley End on Saturday.

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