BY MARCUS HOOK
Rory Burns put Surrey’s One-Day Cup exit down to his side’s oscillating form in the 50-over competition.
A Wednesday crowd of almost 5,000 were given another glimpse of the potential of Will Jacks as the Oval outfit signed-off with a convincing five-wicket victory over Glamorgan.
Jacks, 19, hit a dazzling 80 from 57 balls, but Kent’s defeat at the hands of Essex in the final round of South Group fixtures deemed it immaterial.
Surrey, runners-up in the Royal London in each of the last three seasons, finished the round robin phase with four wins, including dominant displays against Essex and Middlesex.
But their heavy losses to Somerset and, in particular, against Kent, just when their 50-over campaign was just beginning to gain momentum, proved costly.
Burns said: “It was a really good performance against Glamorgan, so we were very disappointed not to qualify. Last year, we just managed to squeeze into the quarter-finals, but this time we came up short.
“I think, to sum up our competition, when we were good, we were very good, but when we were off our game, we were really off.”
The disappointment of failing to reach the knockouts was tempered by the form of Jacks, who became the youngest player to make a List A hundred for Surrey three weeks ago, in the six-wicket victory over Gloucestershire.
“The bowlers set us up nicely against Glamorgan, especially Morne Morkel,” said Burns. “He’s looking quite a handful. Morne has proved he is back to full fitness after his side injury. He even managed to pin me and break my necklace with a short ball in the nets.
“He’s also already proved his worth in the dressing room and as an on-going role model for our other fast bowlers. Much like Kumar Sangakkara during the past three years, when Morne speaks all our young guys really absorb what he says – not just his advice on cricketing things, but also his words generally.
“Morne bowled excellently and was a big factor in how we started the Glamorgan game. We bowled a lot of dot balls early and got a couple of early poles, which really helped in terms of restricting them.”
“Will showed again how easily he hits boundaries when he’s on song. He was exceptional. He will definitely come into our thinking at some stage for red-ball cricket, absolutely.
“Our other youngsters have done well when they’ve been brought into the four-day team in recent times – Amar Virdi, Ryan Patel and Ollie Pope. There’s no reason why Will couldn’t do the same.”
Looking ahead to the switch back to County Championship cricket, Burns added: “I’m just looking forward to leaving one or two balls again!”