Essex v Yorkshire: Silverwood hails champion success
PUBLISHED: 08:51 28 September 2017 | UPDATED: 08:51 28 September 2017
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Essex head coach Chris Silverwood paid tribute to young bowler Sam Cook after the champions wrapped up a convincing 376-run win over Yorkshire.
Cook took 5-20 as the visitors were skittled for 74 in 28.5 overs at Chelmsford to end the season unbeaten in all 14 matches played in the County Championship.
And Silverwood said: “For Sam to come in and play for the last four games and do what he’s done shows the strength of the youth coming through at Essex. The calibre of the guys we’ve got coming through, to come in and do that straight away is amazing.
“The bowling attack have been relentless, they’ve tried to control the run-rate and make life very difficult for the opposition.
“Jamie Porter has stepped up beautifully, Simon Harmer has come in and fitted in well, Sam Cook has come in, young Aaron Beard, everyone in the bowling attack has done exceptionally well.
“The batting unit have contributed, too, they’ve done almost equally as well.”
Essex declared on 334-7, after half-centuries from Nick Browne, Dan Lawrence (both 83), captain Ryan ten Doeschate (57) and Simon Harmer (58 not out).
And Silverwood admitted their success had been a complete team effort, adding: “We’ve got an honours board in the pavilion and there are 13 hundreds from eight different people. So the batsmen have done their job.
“There have been incredible performances, from the youngest member of the squad to the most senior members at any given point. That’s been the beauty, someone no matter whether it’s with the bat or the ball, has always stuck their hand up. It’s incredible how the team has done that, to be honest.
“As a team they’ve got to enjoy this, to start with. You don’t win a Championship every day, and they’ve got to enjoy the pats on the back and take it all in and savour the moment.”
Essex can now bask in their glory over the winter, after clinching their first title since 1992, but Silverwood wants them to retain their hunger for more success.
He said: “That feeling they’ve got of winning this now is part of the motivation to drive us forward again next year. So what we’ll do is draw a line under it and come next January all teams are level again. We’ll start again and move forward.
“I’ve got to motivate these guys to do that and I don’t think it will take much because I think they’ve found that they enjoy winning. That’s motivation in itself.
“It’s an old adage, and it sounds like a cliché, but you can’t allow complacency to enter into it. That will be one of the big things: remind them that we are starting again, the disciplines have got to be good and everyone is going to want to beat us this time. We’ve got to make sure we’re up to the challenge.”
As players and supporters mingled on the outfield after the trophy presentation, Silverwood added his thanks to the fans, saying: “I think the beauty of cricket is everyone is accessible, everyone talks to each other, and that’s one thing I would be absolutely gutted if cricket lost.
“We have a very passionate group of fans. Seeing this, they’re all out here enjoying themselves, mixing with the players and talking to them, again that will be the passion that drives us forward.”