North Otago cricketer Ben Cant is hoping for a big six months in the cricketing circles following a season of cricket in England.
Cant, who is an aggressive top order batter and a very handy medium pace bowler, didn’t have the best of seasons with the bat in England averaging just over 12 for his Newcastle side, but excelled with the ball averaging 23.
“I really really enjoyed it over there even though my form with the bat wasn’t great. I did quite well with the ball though.”
The former St Kevin’s College pupil said the cricket in England was of an incredibly high standard.
“I played in the North East Premier League for Newcastle and it was the strongest level of cricket that I’ve played.”
He left for England on April 4 and returned to New Zealand on September 18, just in time for the start of the cricketing season in Oamaru.
Cant is hoping that time overseas playing in a different competition will help him back here in New Zealand.
At 23-years-old, time is still on his side and Cant is hoping for a strong season to lead his club side Oamaru/St Kevin’s to success as well as the North Otago Hawke Cup team.
“Those are the major focuses for the season to win a Borton Cup and reclaim the Hawke Cup for North Otago.”
His early season form has been outstanding with him already having a 100 and a 50 to his name just six weeks into the season.
“I’m pretty happy with my form and how it’s been.”
A nasty broken foot suffered while doing some fielding had the potential to disrupt his season, but after just three weeks he’s back out on the park.
Cant scored 197 for North Otago last season and would love to replicate that again this year.
“I want to turn 30s and 40s into 100s and win matches.”
Cant is well known in cricketing circles having been part of the Canterbury Cricket Academy while at Lincoln University, has represented Otago A at the national A tournament and has also played premier club cricket in Christchurch.
Club cricket in Oamaru is in good hands according to Cant, but he feels the standard of cricket in North Otago has improved.
“When I was at school the school teams struggled, now they are doing better and the teams are all relatively even now.”
He’s hoping he can score plenty of runs this weekend to give his Oamaru/St Kevin’s club side their first Borton Cup win of the season.
At the moment he is currently working for the North Otago Cricket Association as their development officer and while nothing has been signed he is looking at heading back overseas for another season.
“That’s what I am looking at doing. I’ve signed nothing yet and will look at somewhere in Europe as well.”
By BRAYDEN LINDSAY
PHOTO: BRAYDEN LINDSAY
BIG SEASON AHEAD: Oamaru/St Kevin’s and North Otago Hawke Cup cricketer Ben Cant is hoping to produce plenty of runs this season.