Photo Cred: Durham County Cricket Club

This season was always going to be mission impossible for Durham County Cricket Club. Having been dealt with ECB penalties at the start of their 2017 campaign as a result of their financial struggles, they stood next to know chance of promotion back to Division One even before they stepped foot onto the field. 

After already suffering enforced relegation from the top flight, Durham CCC began their season in Division Two on -48 points and on top of that, they were also docked points in both limited-overs formats as well, -4 in the T20 Blast and -2 in the One Day Cup respectively.

To put it into context, it’s like trying to win a boxing match with both hands tied behind your back.

Despite the point deductions, Durham would have wanted to have picked up more wins than they did, registering just three wins each out of fourteen matches in the Championship and T20 Blast this season. As for the One Day Cup, it was marginally better, picking up four wins out of eight in what was by far their best performance throughout the entire campaign.

Once again, Durham relied heavily on the experienced Paul Collingwood, with Mark Stoneman and Scott Borthwick’s departures affecting them massively in the runs department. But now at 41 years old, how much longer can Durham rely on the talisman?

The main obstacle for the North East side is that it doesn’t look like it’s going to get any easier any time soon, if anything even more challenging.

Overview of Durham’s 2017 campaign;

Specsavers County Championship: 9th place – 98 points, Division Two

T20 Blast: Group Stage – 9th place, 3 points, Bottom of North Group

Royal London One-Day Cup: Group Stage – 5th place, 7 points, North Group

Leading run-scorers;

Specsavers County Championship: Paul Collingwood – 1087 runs

T20 Blast: Paul Collingwood – 346 runs

Royal London One-Day Cup: Keaton Jennings – 460 runs

Leading wicket-takers;

Specsavers County Championship: Chris Rushworth – 47 wickets

T20 Blast: Paul Coughlin – 13 wickets

Royal London One-Day Cup: James Weighell – 18 wickets

Player of the Season; 

Without question, it has to be Paul Collingwood, he has been the standout man for Durham this season, picking up the most runs in the County Championship and the T20 Blast. In a sensational career that has lasted for over 20 years, Collingwood hasn’t got any plans to stop anytime soon either, having already announced he will be part of the  England coaching staff for the Ashes against Australia down under and given the experience he’s got, it’s not a bad choice at all.

Breakthrough Player;

A tough one indeed but the South African Brydon Carse gets my vote, the 22-year old has averaged 91 runs in just two games and looks like a very exciting young prospect. Some other notable mentions though are Tom Latham who had a healthy average of 63.67 and also Cameron Steel who had an average of 40.86.

What’s next?

With the sudden departures of Paul Coughlin, Keaton Jennings and Graham Onions, there are some serious gaps in the side and Durham CCC will be hoping some of their youngsters can step up to the challenge and be ready and raring to go for the start of the 2018 season.

Season Rating; 4/10