ONE year on from his senior Worcestershire debut, spin bowler Josh Baker continues to impress his coaches.

Bowling Coach Alan Richardson has praised the impact made since coming into the side as an 18-year-old last July.

Baker has played every LV=Insurance County Championship match since making his first appearance against Warwickshire at New Road.

Richardson believes the Redditch-born Baker is still a work in progress, but, with his pace, accuracy and bounce, plus an excellent work ethic, he can continue to evolve.

He said: “It (staying in the side) is something Josh should be very proud of. He has always been in and around the Pathway, in and around the Academy, and we always knew the qualities he had, and, when he came into the Seconds, he showed the sort of bowler we hoped he would be.

“He showed some nice attributes, physically and mentally, which impressed everyone and gave him that opportunity.

“There was a gap in the side there for an out and out spinner. Brett D’Oliveira does a fantastic job and bowls well, and that is always improving.

“But to have an out and out spinner, a tall left armer with so many good things in his armoury, it was an opportunity for him.

“He took it brilliantly well and has shown a huge amount of promise there, and he has performed for us regularly and made some really good contributions.”

But it is not just with the ball that Baker has shown promise as Richardson also believes Baker can become a capable lower-order batter.

“It is a work in progress, like all his cricket,” he added.

“He has only just turned 19, and he has shown some really good promise and some skills, and you hope, with playing more and more cricket and learning as he goes, that he will continue to evolve.

“We believe with some work, and he has got an incredible work ethic, that he will be able to turn himself into a really good batter.”

There have been some difficult learning curves along the way, however, and none more so than earlier this season when England test captain Ben stokes hit him for 34 from one over in a county championship game against Durham.

“That was a real tough one for him, but again I think he showed some real resilience,” said Richardson

“It would be pretty naïve to say it didn’t affect him, but the fact is, as a player and as a team, you are not going to play well every time.

“He didn’t enjoy it. It was a real tough day for him, he went away and licked his wounds, but he’s come back and learnt from it.”