Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

WORTH THE WAITE; Richard's Back Home, Better Than Ever

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

WORTH THE WAITE; Richard's Back Home, Better Than Ever

Article excerpt

Byline: ANDREW WILKINSON

Local cricket BACK with a bang - that's Richard Waite who starred with bat and ball on his return to Stockton.

After three years of winning trophies with Chester-le-Street, the all-rounder is back at Stockton hoping to help them hit the heights in the Duke's North-east Premier League.

And after scoring a half-century and snapping up five wickets in the draw with Benwell Hill last weekend, he reckons he has returned a wiser player.

And that's down to Chester-le-Street skipper Quentin Hughes.

"I learned far more there than I thought I would, and now that I'm back at Stockton I want to pass the knowledge on to the young players here," said Richard.

Already an experienced player when he left Stockton, he learned a lot about having a winning mentality at a club that was always battling for honours, and won the league in his first two seasons at Chester-le-Street.

"Quentin taught me about having the right attitude to the game and game situations," he said. "I learned from him how to take a step back, and see the situation clearly.

"The mentality at Chester-le-Street was always that they could win the game. And we had that attitude at Stockton on Saturday, even though we made only 124 against Benwell Hill.

"We felt we could win, and everybody did well and played positively in the field. We came within one wicket of winning, which was frustrating, but it was good to see that belief.

"We need a few players to shine in every game. If somebody is having a good game we want it to rub off on the others."

Stockton finished 10th last season in the 14-team NEPL. The best they have ever finished was third, nine years ago, and since then mid-table is as good as it has got.

But with no players leaving before this season, and three good ones joining - and improving youngsters - there are hopes that Stockton can progress in the coming seasons. …

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