County news January 21, 2016

Rogers, Allenby step up as Trescothick steps down

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Marcus Trescothick has relinquished the Somerset captaincy after six seasons in the job © Getty Images

Marcus Trescothick has promised his "unconditional support" to his replacements having stepped down as captain of Somerset.

Trescothick, now aged 40, was appointed captain in 2010 but, despite leading the side through some of the most enjoyable, competitive years in their history, the trophies remained elusive.

Chris Rogers, recently signed as Somerset's overseas player, will captain the side in the Championship, while Jim Allenby, Australian-born but England-qualified, will captain the side in the limited-overs formats. Trescothick, whose decision was described as "mutually agreed with the club", will continue to play.

Trescothick's spell as captain will be remembered for its near misses; 2010 was especially painful as Somerset, who have never won the County Championship, finished runner-up in all three trophies. Despite finishing level on points with Nottinghamshire in the Championship, Somerset missed out by virtue of fewer victories. They also missed a final-ball run-out that would have won them the T20 final.

They were runners-up in the T20 and 40-over competitions again in 2011 and in the Championship in 2012.

But at a club where success has - rightly or wrongly - often been defined a little more in terms of enjoyment than silverware, Trescothick's period in charge may be remembered as a golden age. And it is true that sell-out crowds - even Championship cricket still attracts decent audience numbers in Taunton - exciting cricket and the emergence of some fine homegrown players may be interpreted as more important than trophies.

Not by everyone, though. The decision to appoint two Australian-born cricketers - and it is noticeable that James Hildreth, who might be seen as an archetypal Somerset cricketer, has been overlooked - speaks of a desire to inject a ruthlessness into the side that it has rarely displayed.

The management wants regular international cricket at a ground whose charm was once exemplified by its dog track and scrumpy. The replacement of the old pavilion, charming but beyond its time, with a fine, new stand might be a metaphor for the club's current state. Progress often brings casualties.

"I have loved being captain of Somerset," Trescothick said. "It has been a tremendous privilege and honour to lead this great club over many years.

"But now is the right time for change. I will be giving Chris and Jim my unconditional support, as well as focusing on scoring as many runs as I can in the season ahead. I would like to thank all of the players, coaches and members for their support during my tenure."

Matt Maynard, the club's director of cricket, said: "Marcus has made an unbelievable contribution to the club as its captain over many years. I know I will be joined by all of our members in thanking him for his unfailing commitment and dedication to leading the side.

"Marcus will now have an opportunity to focus all of his energies on his batting and we hope that stepping down from the captaincy will extend his playing career in the seasons to come."

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • 35bse on January 22, 2016, 12:19 GMT

    I think Poyner needs to look at some data here. Allenby may well have been a "big fish" in the Div 2 pool, but at 30+ is not looking like stepping up to Div 1. Its not difficult to conclude Glamorgan got the better end of the deal in taking Meschede on loan last year, who after a good year away developing should be coming back to Taunton, not falling into the same category as Andrew / Durston etc below!

  •   Darren Cook on January 22, 2016, 3:30 GMT

    Two overseas players captaining a English County, Not great for English Cricket Surely!

  • poyner on January 21, 2016, 22:24 GMT

    Apart from last season, Allenby has been brilliant in county cricket for the thousands of years hes been playing . Tres is a legend but has also had some poor seasons with the bat.

  • Basingrad on January 21, 2016, 22:18 GMT

    I'm a little disappointed for Dreth. Not only an absolutely top bloke and outrageously talented batsman but the possessor of a decent cricket brain that surely deserves the captaincy over an overseas player in his twilight years. It will likely be a one-off season for Rogers, for all his gifts and virtues, whereas Hildreth could lead the side for 5 years plus. He has been desperately unlucky to never play international cricket - almost certainly the best player in the county game at present to not have played for England - so this comes as another blow. I do worry about some of the decision making at Somerset. I'm probably biased having played a bit 2s cricket with them, but Gareth Andrew and Wes Durston were both jettisoned much too easily too, so to see Hildreth overlooked again in favour of an ageing Aussie and a journeyman Aussie is very disappointing.

  • dagger64 on January 21, 2016, 19:52 GMT

    Yes, Roger's appointment seems a good bet if you follow Somerset CCC's past silverware. The last three trophies they won (2001 C&G Cup; 2005 T20 Cup; 2007 LVCC Div 2 title), they were all led by an overseas captain (Cox in 2001; Smith in 2005; Langer in 2007). So Rogers may give SCCC something to attain this season. Or is this something of a Twilight Zone ??

  • mikeindex on January 21, 2016, 17:29 GMT

    Negative seems to be the prevailing mood here, unsurprisingly to some of us with years of experience of sitting surrounded by so-called Somerset 'supporters'.

    As a huge admirer of Marcus over the last 20 years I am of the view that a) a change in captaincy is about due and may well be good for him as well as the team, and b) we should appoint the best captain NOW rather than one we think might be good in 2-3 years' time.

    @Paul, Allenby's record last year was disappointing but it's ridiculous to say he 'failed in every game he played'. He may well be a very good captain, I haven't seen enough of him in that role to say.

    @Juiceoftheapple, speaking as a full-time-working, Taunton-resident, far-from-wealthy Somerset member, I have no idea what you're talking about and less than no idea what relevance it has to the present article.

  • 35bse on January 21, 2016, 16:13 GMT

    As a long time fan, sorry to see Tres step down. This looks like a short term fix at best, Rogers will only be around for a couple of seasons max, and Allenby isnt worth his place in the side in any format - if we are having a short term fix there arent many options, but one with roots in the county (Messrs Trego / Hildreth etc) would seem more sensible!

  • Paul_Somerset on January 21, 2016, 14:45 GMT

    J Allenby's record as captain for Somerset: won 4, lost 5. Yeah, that's going to make a difference, reappointing him, isn't it?

  • Paul_Somerset on January 21, 2016, 14:31 GMT

    Allenby?! Jim "Div 2 standard-but-Maynard's-Man-In The-Dressing-Room" Allenby"!? The only man to be selected for every single fixture for Somerset last year, while failing with both bat and ball in every single one of those fixtures? The man signed solely to cement Maynard's influence and job?

    I am so glad I haven't renewed my membership. The form's gone straight in the bin. This is just insulting those of us who pay the wages.

  • Juiceoftheapple on January 21, 2016, 14:27 GMT

    Clearly you've got to be a member to have your support appreciated by those at Somerset county cricket club, by member I mean, not working/retired (so can watch CC games), wealthy, not from Somerset. Sounds like the regional estate agency target list.

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