NEW Dennington captain Zeb McCarthy says a change of circumstances allowed him to take on the Dogs’ top job.
The opening batman-wicket keeper had been in and out of the Warrnambool and District Cricket Association first XI due to work commitments.
But McCarthy became a permanent fixture again last summer and is now ready to lead the Dogs back into the finals.
“This is a good challenge for myself,” he said.
“I’ve been in leadership roles and captained junior cricket but due to work commitments I didn’t get full seasons under my belt.
“I had a full season last year and I am looking forward to the challenge.
“I think it will add a new dimension to my game.”
McCarthy, 32, has already started Dogs’ pre-season training ahead of the opening twenty20 round on October 8.
He hopes to build on what he considered a moderate output personally with the bat last summer.
He scored 147 runs across 15 matches with a top score of 38.
“I felt a bit scratchy at the start and felt I was finding my feet batting-wise towards the end of the year,” McCarthy said.
“I am more of a patient batsman.
“I let a lot of balls go early and play myself in and then try and consolidate.”
Dennington, which has also welcomed a new president in Michael Howley, hopes to return to the finals fold.
McCarthy, who also plays soccer for Warrnambool Rangers in the Warrnambool and District Soccer League, said the Dogs had kept most of their list together and would back their talent in.
“We only missed by a whisker (last season),” he said.
“I would say there would be a few top-order bats, myself included, who probably didn’t get as many runs as they wanted to or contributed consistently.
“I think this year if the guys can contribute and get big scores on the board that we’ll definitely challenge for finals.”