Win first of many, says Pettini
Captain backs side for more silverware
By Will Wood. Last Updated: August 18, 2008 4:54pm
Mark Pettini believes Essex's victory in the Friends Provident Trophy final will be the first of many pieces of silverware he will enjoy as captain.
The triumph followed up the side's run to the Twenty20 Cup semi-final, while they currently occupy top spot in Division Two of the Pro40 competition, and the 25-year old is confident that this season's efforts will pay off over the coming years.
"When I was offered the captaincy, one of the reasons I really wanted to do it was because I believed this side could go to very high places and win trophies," Pettini said.
"The guys have done themselves proud this year - when we set out at the beginning of the year and looked at what we wanted to achieve it wasn't a project that was going to have immediate results necessarily.
"We thought it might take a little while to develop but all I asked was that the guys played their cricket the right way and tried to fulfil the potential they have got.
"There were no targets in terms of results or trophies at all, we just set up how we wanted to play our cricket and let the results take care of themselves.
"So to have won a major competition this year is really testament to how hard the guys have worked. They have exceeded that expectation of mine."
All-rounder Graham Napier was instrumental in Saturday's success over Kent, with figures of 6-1-11-1, and while the 28-year old is accustomed to receiving the plaudits for his batting, Pettini paid tribute to his bowling efforts as he unsettled the opponents' top-order.
"He can bowl quick, he bowls a heavy ball, we know that from facing him in the nets," said Pettini. "And he's been clocked on television games at up to 88-89 miles per hour," he added.
"He went a little bit quicker here, he's a big, strong guy as everyone can see from his hitting of the ball. But it also means he can bowl fast.
"He has made an effort to get himself stronger and fitter, and he is in great condition."