NEW Allansford mentor Dan Schuppan believes clear roles have kept his leader-heavy unit on the same page in times of duress.
Schuppan’s men adopted a filtering system – with players forced to put their ideas to vice-captain Mitch Clark – to wean out disagreements on-field.
So far, it’s paying dividends.
Allansford is untouchable atop the Warrnambool and District Cricket Association, boasting eight players with a captaincy background in its division one side.
“We have an abundance of leaders. You have to harness that in the right way, though,” Schuppan said.
“Sometimes that can mean there are different opinions and that can be detrimental to your side.
“We’ve made it a big focus to all be on the same page. (Captain) Chris Bant makes the decisions, and other players have to go through Mitch if they want to pass an idea on.
(Captain) Chris Bant makes the decisions, and other players have to go through Mitch if they want to pass an idea on.Dan Schuppan
“Mitch can decide whether or not he takes that idea to Banty, or he can decide to leave it. It has worked really well so far, we’ve been rapt.”
The 32-year-old, who moved to Warrnambool from Melbourne in the off-season, said more top-order stability was helping the Gators’ cause.
However, Schuppan hoped his middle and lower order could maintain their skills despite a lack of time at the crease.
“I think last season, we had people floating around the order a little,” he said.
“The hardest thing was that in the Twenty20s, we had players that hadn’t had a hit so we had to move it around a bit.
“In an ideal world, it’d be great if you get batters and bowlers in getting a good workload in. That doesn’t always happen though, so that’s when training becomes important.”
Asked about his side’s aspirations, Schuppan said he maintained a “week-by-week” mentality.
“We’re just not in a position to look too far ahead. We’re respecting every side, because we finished ninth last season,” he said.
“We’re on top of the ladder now, but we can see a team like Woodford – who most people wrote off – almost inside the top four.
“We’ll get back in Twenty20 mode after the break and then we’ll look back to how we can own our two-day cricket.”