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Tomlinson 'an ideal replacement' if Adams steps down as Hants skipper
6:00am Saturday 14th September 2013 in Sport
JAMES Tomlinson would be “an ideal replacement” if Jimmy Adams decides to step down as Hampshire’s captain.
That is the view of Paul Terry, who was Hampshire manager when Adams and Tomlinson established themselves in the county side after making their debuts at the beginning of the new Millennium.
Adams last week told the Daily Echo that he remains undecided about whether to carry on as captain after the end of this season.
“No doubt I’ll sit down and see what’s best for the club,” he remarked after scoring a double century against Northants at The Ageas Bowl last week.
“There’s a part of it that I find great and other parts that are tough.
“Days like this make it a lot better but a couple of weeks ago, staring down the barrel of a few low scores, it was a lot harder.”
Left-arm seamer Tomlinson, 31, made his Hampshire debut in 2002 and is approaching a century of first class appearances.
He was the Championship’s leading wicket-taker with 67 in 2008 and is again the county’s leading bowler in 2014.
He had taken 39 wickets going into the current Championship clash with Worcestershire at New Road.
“James Tomlinson would be an ideal replacement for Jimmy Adams,” said Terry.
“Jimmy is the ultimate team man and, whatever he does, it’s always in the best interests of the team.
“He would probably be the first to admit that he hasn’t had as good a season with the bat as he would have liked.
“The 200 he scored the other day probably masks his season overall, so it’s a tough decision for him to decide if relinquishing the captaincy would help him to be a better batsman.
“Jimmy is not the sort of person who goes out of his way to upset people.
“He’s sensitive to his teammates and he’s proved himself to be a good leader of men.
“James Tomlinson is experienced and he knows the Hampshire culture inside out.
“I don’t think he would be burdened by the captaincy and would be my choice if Jimmy stood down.
“Slug [Sean Ervine] would also be in the running.
“His cricket brain is second to none at Hampshire but maybe the captaincy would affect him as an all-rounder, as he would end up playing three roles as captain, batsman and bowler.”
Terry also admits Hampshire could follow in the footsteps of Gloucestershire and appoint an overseas captain.
Gloucestershire gave Australian Michael Klinger the captaincy this year despite it being the batsman’s first season in England. “Hampshire could also look at George Bailey,” said Terry.
“George wants to go back to the county for a full season next year and he’s been outstanding as Australia’s T20 captain and also when he’s stood in for Michael Clarke as one-day skipper.
“George would do a good job at Hampshire, but bringing a captain in from outside the group can create extra pressures on the chosen captain as well as team.
“Hampshire have effectively split the captaincy in four-day and limited overs formats in recent seasons.
“That’s probably a good way of going about it as it’s proved to be quite successful.”
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