Being a Derbyshire supporter can sometimes feel like a penance but Wayne Madsen is convinced some seeds of promise have been sown in what has been a testing season for the club.
Madsen’s own form apart, there have been some shafts of sunlight to break through the dark clouds that seem to have been stationed over the county for most of the summer.
Harvey Hosein batted with considerable maturity in the last home match of the campaign against Leicestershire when his partnership with Madsen on the third afternoon steered Derbyshire away from possible defeat.
“He is a great example, “ Madsen said. “The way he played over the last few games he’s shown a lot of maturity and the young bowlers have started to come through so there are a lot of talented young cricketers coming through.
“I think a real positive is that we are seeing some of our young guys, in particular in the last couple of games, starting to stand up, and for us the key is to add a bit of experience through the winter which I know we are trying to do.
“It’s always disappointing when you get to this stage of the season and you are not competing anywhere near the top but in white ball cricket we have shown a lot of improvement and in red ball cricket we need to perform better.
“We need to consistently score big runs and take 20 wickets which we’ve struggled to do with a youngish attack but I think we are now seeing they are developing their skills and game plans.”
Madsen stepped down as captain before the season to concentrate on his batting and still harbours ambitions of attracting the attentions of the England selectors.
“There are a lot of young players coming through who are performing well but I have experience and have been doing it for a number of years now,” he said.
“I’ve been scoring runs consistently so I’d like to think there is still a chance for me. Looking around the country there are other batters who are scoring runs and trying to put their name in the hat as well so the best thing for me is to keep scoring runs, let the bat do the talking and hopefully the rest will take care of itself.
“To have done really well in a team that’s not performing could potentially count against me because it’s not in a winning team but for me it’s about runs on the board and this is the first time I’ve scored five hundreds in a season.”