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Our t20 displays can be helped by 40-over form
WEATHER-permitting, we will step up our preparations for the Friends Life t20 today with some scenarios training out in the middle.
A few of the first-team lads were down to play in two t20 friendlies at Gloucestershire yesterday, but unfortunately they were both rained off.
We also have a t20 match against Shropshire scheduled for tomorrow night at Shrewsbury and that should give the boys a good warm-up, before Friday’s massive derby with Warwickshire at Edgbaston.
Last season, we managed to beat our old rivals twice in the t20, so hopefully we can continue that form when we meet them this week.
Meanwhile, we are still in the mix for qualification from our group in the Clydesdale Bank 40 — we have performed solidly, but have only won three and lost three.
We have been a bit unlucky, getting on the wrong end of the Duckworth/Lewis system a couple of times and, generally, I have been pleased with how we have done in the competition so far.
It has been a big improvement on last year and, half-way through this campaign, we are still in with a chance of qualification.
Our group is tightly-packed at the moment and, if we can put a bit of a run together when the competition resumes, we could well qualify.
Against Lancashire, Phil Hughes and Vikram Solanki both scored fantastic hundreds and we posted a big score, but unfortunately we ended up on the wrong side of the Duckworth/Lewis score. I thought there would have been a bit of rain around and I would have batted second if I’d won the toss.
We have been trying to make sure one of our top three guys bats right through the innings in 40-over cricket and, so far, we have been doing that pretty well.
We had a point to prove against the Netherlands after they beat us in the first game at Kidderminster and we certainly did that after bowling them out for just 57.
They have done really well in the competition, are top of the group and are a very good one-day outfit. We had to be on top of our game to beat them like we did.
Again, it was a big toss to win on an up-and-down, two-paced pitch — the ball seamed around a lot and it was basically like a wet club wicket that was very difficult for the batsmen. However, we didn’t let them get away and kept the pressure on throughout.
Gloucestershire were excellent when they beat us on Sunday and they carried out their plans very well. They kept wickets in hand and I thought 220 was about a par score, so they were above that.
We were a bit off the mark with the ball and in the field, but it wasn’t a poor performance — I’d say it was average, but Gloucestershire just played very well.