Ervine predicts bright future at Hampshire
Sean Ervine plans to keep doing his bit to take Hampshire back to LV= County Championship Division One at the first attempt, but insists promotion is not all-important for a young side this season.
The former Zimbabwe all-rounder has been one of their better performers this term, but the south-coast county have made an all-too familiar underwhelming start.
A convincing Clydesdale Bank 40 win over Glamorgan on Sunday at least got their one-day campaign off to a good start but, having been relegated in the championship last year, many fans and pundits expect Hampshire to go straight back up in the four-day format.
“I think Chalks [Hampshire coach Giles White] would love to be promoted this year, but I think if it didn’t happen it’s probably not the end of the world because we’ve got such a young team,” Ervine, who endured a washout yesterday on day one against Derbyshire, told ecb.co.uk.
“I think at the moment we’re looking at small steps at a time. Obviously everyone would love to get promoted, but we can’t look too far ahead. It’s every game as it comes along, but I’m sure come September that will be on everyone’s mind.
“I’ve got to go and do my things. Hopefully by me doing my own individual things it sets a standard for the younger guys to follow.
"I’m sure there will be times through the season when [captain] Jimmy [Adams] will come to ask me for advice, or maybe one of the youngsters, and obviously I’ll go ahead and give them that. But I’m here to do my job.
“Danny Briggs has had a good winter, James Vince was on the Lions tour. David Balcombe and David Griffiths have played quite a lot of championship cricket, so with all the youngsters at Hampshire it’s another year that they’ve played together.”
Ervine collected five Test and 42 limited-overs caps for Zimbabwe but, having turned down the chance to return to the international fold ahead of the 2011 World Cup, the 29-year-old now has his sights on a place in England’s one-day side.
Ervine would have had to leave Hampshire to return to action for Zimbabwe, but feels he made the right decision staying on with the county he joined in 2005.
“I qualified on April 1 - an England one-day squad would be one of the things I’d love to achieve,” he added. “I would have loved to have played in the World Cup alongside my brother, but it’s worked out well and I’m very pleased with the decision I made.
“I’ll just be happy to contribute. I’ve set my goals for the season. If I achieve those goals, then I’ve contributed well to the group.
“One of them is 1,000 runs; I think every batsman wants to try and achieve 1,000 runs in a county season. And the other one is 40 wickets; I know if I can achieve those - I’ve only done it once which is in 2005 - but if I achieve those I know I’ve done my job.”