ONE door shuts and another opens.
Russells Creek is facing life without star paceman Jimmy Elford - who will miss the opening month of the season - but has faith his replacement can step up.
Creek will call upon premiership quick Izzy Yaddehige to fill the void left by Elford, who is recovering from hernia surgery.
Elford is expected to return in November.
Yaddehige, who helped Creek to its maiden Warrnambool and District Cricket Association division one premiership in 2018, has been lured back to Jetty Flat after a season at Aberfeldie Park in Melbourne.
Skipper Cam Williams was confident his four-pronged bowling attack could cover the loss of Elford throughout October.
"We've had a fantastic bowling attack over the last few years led by Matt Petherick and Jimmy and in bringing back Izzy, and with Blake Evans, we have four genuine quick bowlers," Williams told The Standard.
"That's a real luxury and with Joe Kenna as a spin option with Matt Bignell as another spinner, we'll be able to fill the void.
"It's a good headache to have. There are guys that might not always get as much opportunity as they'd like, but they play their role and step up when called on."
Creek has also regained the services of star all-rounder Tim Ryan.
With Joe Kenna as a spin option with Matt Bignell... We'll be able to fill the void.Cam Williams
Williams, into his fourth season as skipper, said the unpredictable nature of pitches in the south-west meant it was helpful having an arsenal of bowlers to choose from.
"It's handy having an arsenal ready to go. That's not just in division one, it's oozing through to division two and three as well," he said.
"You're able to restrict sides and it's handy to have in your game plan.
"Around here when the wickets are a bit greener and softer, a good bowling unit helps out at the right part of the day."
Russells Creek is hoping to notch its third-successive premiership this season.
It snapped a 40-year flag drought under Williams' guidance in 2018.
Williams, a wicketkeeper and top-order batsman, said Creek was this season an underdog but was quietly confident.
"The main thing is having another crack," he said.
"We'll go in underdogs behind (Brierly-Christ Church) but a winning culture is what we're trying to build.
"We've got an opportunity to really compete and that culture of winning really oozes through the grades.
"I just want us to have 12 really committed players who are ready to go each week and have a real go at it."
Creek's premiership defence begins against up-and-comer Merrivale at Jetty Flat on Saturday.
It will begin at 12pm.
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