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Champions Essex pop across the border for indoor training near Sawbridgeworth


By Michael Vaughton


Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate, right, with Herts and Essex Cricket Centre manager Luke Humphrey Pictures: Vikki Lince
Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate, right, with Herts and Essex Cricket Centre manager Luke Humphrey Pictures: Vikki Lince

Essex are busy getting themselves ready for the defence of their Specsavers County Championship, Division One title.

Ryan ten Doeschate faces Ravi Bopara
Ryan ten Doeschate faces Ravi Bopara

The team celebrated winning the crown in 2017, winning 10 of their 14 fixtures and finishing more than 70 points clear of their nearest challengers Lancashire.

They will soon be heading out for some warm-weather training and friendly action in the West Indies as they count down to the start of the 2018 campaign.

But before enjoying some time in the sunshine they have been working on their game a little closer to home at the HECC Sport Centre for Cricket in Rook End, High Wych.

The likes of captain Ryan ten Doeschate, England stars Tom Westley and Ravi Bopara, hot property Dan Lawrence, James Foster and Varun Chopra have been making themselves feel at home at the Tharbies Farm complex.

Barun Chopra faces the auto bowler
Barun Chopra faces the auto bowler

The county champions have been doing physical training and fitness tests at the five-lane indoor centre, which is celebrating its 10-year anniversary, due to their own training centre being refurbished, and they are spending two days a week at the complex.

“We’ve been here 10 years and we’ve built up a good reputation with Essex,” said the centre’s head coach Luke Humphrey.

“They were aware of the quality of our centre and they chose to send their professional players over here in the absence of their own facilities.

“We’re an independent family business, so after 10 years it’s nice to know the facility warrants the attention and a booking from the county champions.”

Callum Taylor in training at the HECC
Callum Taylor in training at the HECC

The centre offers a wide variety of all-round coaching – batting, bowling and fielding – for all age groups, from grass-roots level to county and beyond.

One-to-one, group, club and masterclass coaching sessions are held throughout the year, as well as additional team and league training in the purpose-built indoor and outdoor facility.

Humphrey oversees all of the coaching programmes and courses at the centre throughout the year and he has 15 years of experience with players of all ages and abilities.

He started his coaching career in 1998 as an ECB Level 1 coach and later joined the family business on a full-time basis in 2002, before becoming one of the youngest ECB Level 3 coaches in England.

Matt Quinn
Matt Quinn

Visit www.heccsport.com to find out more.



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