OUTGOING Lancashire batsman Ashwell Prince believes the Red Rose side can go on and secure the County Championship title in 2016, regardless of whether they are promoted as champions this week.

Lancashire travel to Essex today with an eight-point deficit to make up on leaders Surrey, who take on Northamptonshire, in the final games of the season.

But having already secured promotion and won the T20 Blast title at Edgabaston, Prince, who made the decision to end his spell at Old Trafford earlier this summer, is confident that good times lie ahead of Lancashire.

“There was a chance I could have stayed on, but with it being such a successful season, the time was right,” the 38-year-old told Lancashire’s website.

“Winning the second division is 10th in the country, and as far as I am concerned we are better than that.

“Promotion is important, but if we are honest with ourselves we should be better than 10th or 11th in the country. That’s what it is all about for me.

“Hopefully the lads believe they can challenge. We have some of the best spinners in the country that complement our seamers. Put it all together, and I have no doubt they can challenge “The last time the team won the Championship, I wasn’t part of that. Most of the lads in the dressing room were, and there is no doubt in my mind they can do it again.”

And Prince, who has enjoyed a stellar season which has seen him top the Championship scoring charts with 1,427 runs, also pointed to the potential in a dressing room which includes talented Darwen wicketkeeper/batsman Alex Davies.

“We have a lot of potential in the dressing room – people like Alex Davies, Haseeb Hameed, Karl Brown, Steven Croft. I really want to see them kick on,” the South African added.