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Members' and Supporters' Lunches 2014-15:
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Leicestershire batsman Angus Robson said the team will focus on the positives as they travel to Glamorgan for the fifth LV=CC match of the campaign on Sunday.
Leaders Hampshire bowled Leicestershire out for 96 on the final day but County had more than matched them over the first three days and had the upper hand in draws in their three previous LV=CC matches.
Robson said: “It was disappointing because we have started the season so well, and we feel like we deserve a win somewhere. I’m sure that will come but in the end we were beaten by the better side in Hampshire over the four days.
“We will remain positive because we were more than in the game up until the last day. There were just a few key moments in the game where they got on top, like when we were 187-3 at tea in the first innings.
“Also on the third day they got away from us a little bit in the afternoon session when James Vince played really well. We came back well getting 340 ahead by the end of the day proved too many.
“We weren’t at our best over the course of the Hampshire game but it has been a good first month for us overall. We have been very good and there are a lot of positives. A lot of the guys are having great seasons and I am sure a win is not too far away.”
Robson forced his way into the Leicestershire side at the start of 2014 after a solid winter’s work in his native Sydney was backed up my promising pre-season performances.
The 22-year-old has repaid the faith shown in him by scoring 244 LV=CC runs in his first seven innings. That impressive tally includes scores of 81 and 94 against Kent and Essex respectively when batting at number four in place of captain Ramnaresh Sarwan.
Robson was then promoted to open the batting against Hampshire - a role he enjoys and one that his brother Sam carries out with aplomb for Middlesex - and he made a high-quality half-century against a potent seam attack of Kyle Abbott, James Tomlinson and Matt Coles.
The talented batsman said the challenge is to now convert those scores into three figures as he looks to continue his development at the Club, where Ben Smith continues to have a big influence on his career.
He said: “I trained really hard in the winter and I feel that I have really improved from this time twelve months ago – and even six months ago.
“I had a lot of batting training in Sydney with coach Mark O’Neill, and the other person I worked a lot with is my brother Sam. Ben (Smith) has also really helped to develop my game too while I have been with Leicestershire and I have been doing a lot of work with him since I came back to England.
“I was very pleased with the way I played in the first innings against Hampshire. That was probably as well as I have played this year given the conditions, the pressure of the game and the fact that they have a good attack.
“But I needed to go on for the team and get a bigger score than just 50. We all have areas to improve - and I need to get better - but it has been a pleasing start and hopefully I can continue to keep scoring runs.
“I’m happy with my start. It’s been good to get in the first team. I wanted to contribute and it’s been pleasing to do well but there are always areas to improve. I’ve had an 80 and a 90 and a 50, and it would have been nice to have got bigger scores.
“Hopefully that will come as I get more opportunities. I just have to keep trying my best. The most important thing is to keep improving and helping the team out whichever way I can.”
Robson is clearly a player of huge potential and his well-organised batting has been backed up by some excellent fielding in the gully and a couple of promising overs of leg-spin.
That facet to his game could be used a bit more in Cardiff given the pitch at the SWALEC Stadium tends to suit the slow men. Robson feels Jigar Naik has been bowling really well and says he could come into his own in the next fixture.
He said: “I’m sure it will be different conditions to the Hampshire game. It didn’t really turn at all over the four days here but I’m sure Jigar (Naik) will come into it more in Cardiff. He’s been bowling very well and we’ll certainly need Jigar to keep performing because he is one of the key aspects of our team.
“We played well against Glamorgan a few weeks ago and were three wickets away from a win. We will therefore go there with a positive attitude and have high hopes of a win, but we’ll have to play well.
“It will be a tough four days because they are a good side with a couple of proven test batsmen. They are a good, solid outfit across the board and we’ll have to be on top of our game. I’m sure we will be. We’re looking forward to it and we’ll go there with confidence.”
Leicestershire have named a 12-man squad for the trip to Wales with seamer Alex Wyatt added to the side that played against Hampshire.
Glamorgan will be pleased to welcome back strike bowler Michael Hogan, who has missed the majority of this season after returning to Australia for the birth of his second child.
Leics (from): Smith, Robson, Eckersley, Sarwan, Cobb, O'Brien, Taylor, Naik, Ireland, Buck, Shreck, Wyatt.