Fylde coast cricket preview: Fleetwood's star performer vows complacency won't set in

There’s no chance of complacency creeping in at all-conquering Fleetwood Cricket Club, where outstanding Australian Zac Corcoran insists the second half of the season will be far tougher than the first.

By Andy Moore
Friday, 15th July 2022, 6:00 am

The Broadwater club top the Moore and Smalley Palace Shield by 34 points, having won all 12 premier division matches to date: most recently a six-wicket success at Eccleston.

Determined to bounce back up to the Northern Premier League at the first attempt following relegation, Fleetwood enlisted the help of seamer Corcoran as an overseas amateur.

Sixty-one victims later, the left-armer is the league’s leading wicket-taker and a key factor in Fleetwood’s success so far in 2022.

Fleetwood's Zac Corcoran has been a constant danger to opposition batters this season

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The prolific player from the Ringwood club in Melbourne insists it will become tougher to maintain their record, though that won’t stop Fleetwood from trying.

Corcoran told The Gazette: “The Palace Shield is a reasonable standard and there are a lot of good players.

“We’ve beaten every other side now and they will be hungry next time they play us. We’re the team to beat so it will get tougher.

“I want to help the team stay top and hopefully unbeaten but I’m not one for setting targets. It’s definitely one game at a time, like Shaz keeps saying. Shaz really looks after everyone.”

Corcoran is referring to captain Adam Sharrocks, who has helped him handle the upheaval of his major decision to sample cricket in England for the first time.

There are strong links between his two clubs as Corcoran explained: “Dave King (the Ringwood captain and former Fleetwood professional) put a message out that Fleetwood were looking for a player.

“We’d been stuck at home with Covid and I figured it was an opportunity I may as well take.”

The coastal life is helping Corcoran to feel at home, adding: “I’m based in Cleveleys and they’ve given me a bike, so I’m riding up and down the Prom a lot and I’ve seen most of the Fylde coast.”

The weather is starting to remind him a little more of home too, though Corcoran was still shocked to hear that this week’s temperatures qualify as a heatwave by British standards.

Not that he’s complaining as British conditions certainly suit his game.

He said: “It’s not as warm as I expected but I’ve not had to change my technique much and it’s probably improved my technique playing here.

“I’m medium pace with a bit of swing and you can get swing here when it’s cloudy, which it has been most days!

“The grounds are smaller than I’m used to back home and the pitches are a bit softer but otherwise there isn’t a great difference.”

A sweltering weekend is on the cards and it's a relentless one for Fleetwood, with a T20 at Carnforth tonight, followed by a league derby at Kirkham and Wesham and a rematch at Eccleston on Sunday in the Meyler Cup semi-finals.

That's just how Corcoran likes it, adding: “I’m here to play games and I’m loving every minute. I want to play as many games as I can.

“I’m here for the rest of the season, then I hope to do some travelling around Europe before going home.”

TOMORROW’S CRICKET

Northern Premier League (12.30pm): Blackpool v Netherfield, Kendal v St Annes.

Liverpool Competition first division (12pm): Rainford v Lytham.

Moore and Smalley Palace Shield Premier Division (1pm): Kirkham and Wesham v Fleetwood, Morecambe v Great Eccleston, Thornton Cleveleys v Croston.

Division 1A (1pm): Mawdesley v Fylde.

Division 1B (1pm): Fleetwood 2 v Morecambe 2, Fulwood and Broughton 2 v Thornton Cleveleys 2, Great Eccleston 2 v Penwortham 2, Longridge 2 v Blackpool 2.

Division 2 (1pm): Preston 2 v Norcross, St Annes 2 v Gregson Lane, Vernon Carus 2 v Wrea Green.

SUNDAY

40 Over Cup (2pm): Blackpool v Fulwood and Broughton, Leyland v St Annes.

Meyler Cup (1.30pm): Eccleston v Fleetwood.