THIS time two years ago Alfie Ogborne was working for a builder and any hopes of ever fulfilling his dream of becoming a professional cricket and playing for Somerset seemed a very long way off, writes Richard Walsh.

Since then a great deal has happened in the 20 year old’s life. Alfie joined Bridgwater Cricket Club at the start of 2022 where he was given the chance to open the bowling and show what he could do.

He did just that on the strength of which he was selected to play for Somerset Seconds, and is now looking forward to his second season as a full-time professional.

Talking earlier this week the left arm bowler said: “I am very excited about the start of the new season and think I have progressed really well this winter.

“I have had a lot of support from all of the coaches and the players at the club and done a lot of batting pre-season which has filled me with confidence and I’m ready to go.”

Earlier in the spring Alfie spent time in Sri Lanka as well as going with the rest of the squad to Abu Dhabi.

“What a privilege firstly to be able to go on those trips. In Sri Lanka there was only seven players along with head coach Jason and Shane Burger which was a great opportunity and we all progressed because the programmes were tailored to our own individual needs.

“Bowling outdoors in February off a full run up was something special and I feel just so lucky and these sorts of things just fill you with confidence. You can experiment with things so that when you go into the season you know what does and doesn’t work for you].

“Then we went out to Abu Dhabi and I got to take four wickets in one game . I haven’t had too much experience in the T20 but the value of the left armer swinging the ball away from the bat is something I have been working on this winter. The fact that I could go out there and do that made me really happy k and getting some reward was a really nice feeling.

“One thing about me that everyone knows is my passion for Somerset is always there and I am always desperate to win for this club and put everything on the line to make sure we can.

“With the development and progress that I have made this winter I am in a fighting place to be pushing for the first team and in my eyes in all three formats, but I also know that we have got some exceptional bowlers who are going to take some replacing.”

Alfie missed the latter part of last season through injury so what has he done over the winter to try to make sure that doesn’t happen again?

“I have put on five kilos of lean muscle so I’d like to think that I'm going to be fit to play the whole season. I have never had a serious injury in my life so it came as a bit of a shock. However I got cracking early doors and worked hard in the gym knowing that I had to get stronger like to rest of the lads and give myself the best opportunity.

“I cannot wait and want to try to get my foot in the door early on- but it wont be easy because we have got one of the best bowling attacks in the country.”

Once again Alfie paid tribute to Bridgwater CC for the part they played in helping him on his way.

“I owe so much to Bridgwater Cricket Club because they gave me my chance to show what I could  do which enabled me to get noticed by Somerset. If it wasn’t for their confidence in backing me in 2022 then I doubt I would be here now. My brother Jamie who is a right arm bowler has joined Bridgy this year so I expect I will be going over to watch him and catch up with my mates there."

Alfie ended up by saying: “My goal for as long as I can remember was to play for Somerset and even when times got really hard and nobody was considering me becoming a professional cricketer I just kept going and that’s been the story of my career so far. People look at me and think I’m average but as soon as I get that chance I always take it and I just want to keep on doing that for Somerset and hopefully one day for my country as well- so I have just got to keep on going and keep pushing.”