Ben Slater confident Derbyshire CCC can mount serious promotion push

Derbyshire CCC 2015 squad Ben Slater,
Derbyshire CCC 2015 squad Ben Slater,

Derbysire CCC batter Ben Slater believes his side have the building blocks in place to launch a serious promotion push.

Derbyshire ended last season strongly by winning five of their final six LV= Championship Division Two matches to finish in fourth spot.

And the Chesterfield-born left-hander believes that the good run can be carried over to the new season as Derbyshire seek a return to Division One.

Said Slater: “We are all looking forward to the season ahead and the mood in the camp is good.

“We won three out of four games during our pre-season tour in Abu Dhabi and we played some good cricket while we were out there. It was good to get out playing again.

“We finished strongly at the end of last season and that has given us confidence. We have got the formula needed to win games and we need to carry on where we left off.

“The building blocks are in place and we have the platform now to progress to Division One where we want to be.

“We have got good facilities in place and are gearing up to be in Division One on and off the field. We all want to play at the highest level.

“We have a young squad, but everyone is building on experience and learning. We can’t wait to get going.”

And Slater, who has hit 1,230 runs during 43 innings at an average of 29.28, is eager to make himself a key part of the club’s promotion challenge.

“My main aim is to make sure I am in the team for the first game of the season,” he said. “I want to play the full 16 games in the Championship and hopefully take that in to the T20.

“We have strengthened well for the T20. Nathan Rimmington has done well in the Big Bash league and he will be great for the bowlers to work with, Guptill is back and Tillakaratne Dilshan should be another great signing for us.

“We obviously want to improve in T20 and if we could get to finals day that would be a great achievement

“T20 is important for us, but our main aim is to get promoted to Division One. It is an exciting time for the club.”

Slater made his first class debut for Leeds/Bradford MCCU against Surrey in 2012.

Derbyshire CCC won the Division Two title in 2012, but were relegated from Division One the following season.