ROBBIE White should have been looking forward to a gentle game of club cricket this weekend before packing his cricket coffin for a week away on the Isle of Wight with Middlesex seconds.

Instead he will be attempting to help kick-start Essex’s faltering Royal London Cup campaign.

White is on a two-month secondment with the Eagles and has impressed greatly while on-staff wicketkeepers Adam Wheater and Michael Pepper recover from their respective operations on thumb and appendix.

Their 23-year-old replacement has not missed much behind the stumps in his three 50-over outings and one Specsavers County Championship appearance in the last fortnight, during which time he has taken a dozen catches and three stumpings.

“I’m absolutely loving it,” he said.

“It all came out of the blue, so it’s been a whirlwind few weeks.

"The chance to play regular first-team cricket was something I was desperate for at this point.

"So as soon as I heard there was an opportunity to play week-in week-out, and learn on the job, I jumped at it.

“Even just training and getting involved with the squad is going to make me a better player.

"So if I can go back to Middlesex having gained from that experience, having learnt from some of the senior players in the dressing room, then it can only help me in my career.”

In the immediate future, however, are Royal London group games at Taunton today against Somerset and back at Chelmsford against Hampshire on Sunday (11am start) rather than a match for his home-town club Ealing and a ferry ride to the Isle of Wight to play Hampshire twos at Newport from Monday onwards.

Two defeats, after an opening-day victory, have left Essex struggling as they approach the halfway mark of the white-ball competition.

White added: “I know this one-day campaign is something they are really focused on.

"If I can help the guys so they are going into the last few games with a fighting chance of getting through to the knockout stages, that will be fantastic.”

White’s arrival at Chelmsford has given him another opportunity to team up with Essex seamer Sam Cook and revive the scorebook entry of ‘caught White, bowled Cook’ from their days as team-mates at Loughborough University.

“I had two really good years on the MCCU scheme with Sam, so I know him and his game really well," said White.

I always enjoy keeping to him; I always feel I’m in the game when he’s bowling.

"It’s been nice to rekindle that combination.

“It’s been amazing to see how well he’s done since I left Loughborough.

"I’ve been in contact with him consistently for the last year or two since we’ve been out of uni.

"I was messaging him frantically over the days when this loan was on the cards.”