Captain Billings looks ahead to 2023

Wednesday 5th April 2023

Men’s First Team

Captain Billings looks ahead to 2023

It was a bit of a sense of ‘deja-vu’ last season if you look back at it in hindsight – another trophy for us after a slow start and a brilliant end to our season in terms of results.

We know that our target this year is to give ourselves a better platform to work on in terms of early-season results – we have shown in the latter stages of the Summer in the last two years that we are capable of beating anyone on our day, and it’s just about getting into our stride and into form quicker. This in turn will give us the best chance in competing across all three formats.

On a personal note, I’m really looking forward to being here at the start of the season, doing everything I can to help the team get off to a solid start in the LV= Insurance County Championship. There’s no doubt we have the capability to build something special this coming season in red-ball cricket.

It was also a brilliant day to witness the One-Day Cup victory at Trent Bridge last year. I travelled up with other members of our squad that weren’t involved, and we watched the lads bring home a trophy. What was so pleasing was seeing a talent like Joey Evison put on a show with both bat and ball in a high-pressure situation.

The future is certainly bright with players like Joey, Tawanda (Muyeye), Jordan (Cox), Nathan (Gilchrist) and Hamid (Qadri). It’s a brilliant young exciting core group to build upon the success of the last two years.

It was absolutely the right decision for us to select a team for that Final from the players that had got us there – there was no debate at all behind the scenes about us maybe adding in returning players to the squad. A competition like the One-Day Cup has been great to provide a platform for players who wouldn’t necessarily get that amount of guaranteed game time at such a young age otherwise.

We are continuing to work towards raising standards on and off the field, something we know comes from every aspect of being a Kent cricketer – putting the work in at training and during pre-season is one aspect, but also doing the little things well and performing the simple skills to the highest level.

I say this every year, but your support is a big part of being successful as a side. The support makes a huge difference and as players we feed off it. The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence can be a very special place, especially under the lights, and it’s quite rightly known as ‘Fortress Canterbury’.

Together, we can build on the successes of the last couple of years going into 2023 and beyond. I look forward to seeing you all at The Spitfire Ground this Summer.

Sam Billings

Men’s Captain

This article appears in the 2023 Kent Cricket Annual, which will be on sale at the Kent Cricket Shop during Kent’s season opener against Northamptonshire, 6-9 April at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence.

Buy match tickets now

With the 2023 cricket season set to begin next week, Kent Cricket has confirmed an exciting ticket offer to give the Kent community an opportunity to see their cricket team in County Championship action during the upcoming Bank Holiday weekend.

Buy Day Two tickets now

Titled ‘Pay what you can’, supporters will be able to purchase tickets for as little as £1 for the Good Friday Bank Holiday, 7 April – Day Two of Kent vs. Northamptonshire.

Whether you are a keen follower of cricket or never been to a cricket match before & are looking for something to do with the family over the Bank Holiday weekend, everyone is welcome.

Only 8 weeks until Blast is back! Kent Spitfires’ T20 opener for 2023 is against Gloucestershire at The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence in Canterbury on Wednesday 24 May – entry to all scheduled T20 home matches is included in Kent Cricket Memberships, on sale now.

Buy T20 tickets now [Early Bird prices run until 3 May]