Coaching post forces Huggins to step aside

SUDBURY: Cricket Sudbury v Wivenhoe
Tom Huggins Sudbury bowler
Picture Mark Westley ANL-150816-204846009
SUDBURY: Cricket Sudbury v Wivenhoe Tom Huggins Sudbury bowler Picture Mark Westley ANL-150816-204846009
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Work commitments have forced Sudbury’s Tom Huggins to relinquish his role as captain of the Suffolk cricket team.

The 33-year-old has represented the county throughout the previous 11 years, the last two of which he has taken on the role as skipper.

However, having accepted a role to join the coaching staff of Essex Cricket Club on a full- time basis, Huggins is now preparing for his 63rd and final Minor Counties Championship match for Suffolk this weekend, against Staffordshire at Ipswich School.

“I will still play club cricket for Sudbury on Saturdays as I love the game and still enjoy playing,” said Huggins, who is one of only two Level 4 coaches in Suffolk.

“At the start of the 2015 season, as a team we set out some goals and I look forward to seeing these goals through.

“I am very fortunate to have a career in a game that has offered me so much and I love the competitive nature of club cricket so I envisage playing for as long as I can.

“I’m completely unsure at the moment whether I’ll be available to play any one-day cricket for Suffolk next season.

“Obviously, with a new job and a young family next year, I think my availability will be limited, but if the opportunity arises and it doesn’t impact upon the side, I would love to still play for the county as I have enjoyed my involvement over the past 11 years.”

Peterborough-born Huggins made his Suffolk debut in 2006 following his release by Northamptonshire, for whom he made 11 first-class appearances.

He will depart without achieving his ambition of helping Suffolk to win the Championship, although he was a member of the side that lifted the Minor Counties Trophy in 2007 for the first – and so far only – time in the county’s history.

The all-rounder also has a string of achievements to his name, most notably the fact that his 14 centuries in the Championship is the highest number recorded by any Suffolk player.

“I have had some excellent times playing for Suffolk, both on and off the field, and would like to thank everyone who has been a part of this.

“When I started in 2006 I never dreamed that I would have the experiences I have had and through this time have forged friendships that will stay with me forever,” he added.

n On Saturday, Huggins’ Sudbury will be in action away at Vauxhall Mallards (11am).