Bishop’s sights are set high

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SUFFOLK captain Justin Bishop claims his side are ‘aiming high’ as they look for success in the Minor Counties Championship and MCCA Knockout Trophy.

Bishop, who also plays for Bury, will be an integral part of Suffolk’s chances as they participate in the 50-over-a-side MCCA KO Trophy starting this Sunday against Lincolnshire at Copdock (11am).

Suffolk have been drawn in Group Four and will play Lincolnshire, Norfolk, Wiltshire and Shropshire.

The club will want to improve on their fourth-place finish (out of five) in their group last year.

Bishop certainly believes the quality is there for Suffolk to improve and challenge for qualification.

He said: “Hopefully we can start off well in our first game against Copdock as we’ve had a really good pre-season at Ipswich.

“We’re looking to qualify out of our group against four other teams, so with three or four good performances we should be able to qualify. We’re a team that’s aiming high.”

They will also be set for a title challenge in the Minor Counties Championship three-day competition and will seek improvement on their mid-table finish in the Eastern Division last year.

Bishop, who is also a teacher at County Upper School in Bury St Edmunds, praised the blend of youth and experience ahead of the summer schedule.

He said: “Four or five of us have played together for the past five or six years so we know each other’s strengths and we’re giving an opportunity to young players to get that mix of youth and experience.”

The county captain is also looking forward to playing at Bury during most of Suffolk’s home games this summer.

He said: “It’s a nice bonus to play in front of a familiar home crowd although it would’ve been good to play all around the county. But I’m not complaining, I only live down the road.”