WORCESTERSHIRE Rapids head coach Alan Richardson has been full of praise for pace bowler Pat Brown ahead of Friday’s Vitality Blast quarter-final.

Rapids will travel to the Ageas Bowl to take on Hampshire Hawks as they look to continue their quest for a second Blast title.

Brown has been in the kind of form he displayed during Worcestershire’s last Blast-winning campaign in 2018 and the following season in which they finished as runners-up.

Richardson said: “Pat has been fantastic this year and I’m really pleased for him because he burst on the scene in 2018 and 2019 and did really well.

“It’s been a tough couple of years for him with injuries so he’s not really had that opportunity and this time, for the first time since then, he’s had an opportunity to play lots of cricket before the T20 which no doubt has really helped him.

“He puts his heart and soul into it, he is very emotional in a good way. He directs it in the right way and he has an incredible desire to win and to help the team win.

“He has that about him which is a good trait to have.”

Brown has put his injuries behind him and has so far claimed 24 scalps in this summer’s Blast, moving into second spot in the Rapids all-time list of T20 wicket-takers with 95, six behind only Daryl Mitchell.

Richardson added: “Pat has created a lot of opportunities and does a job for us that not many people would want to do.

“He bowls the really tough overs. In virtually every game he has bowled over number six for us, the last over of the powerplay, which historically is very tough.

“Pat has also bowled two of the last three or four overs virtually every game. Pat has got the mentality, he loves doing it, he understands the volatility of the game.

“Some days it will go really well and he will take wickets and help us win a game of cricket and other times it doesn’t go so well. But he understands that and deals with that really well.”

It isn’t a one-man team though, and Richardson believes the Rapids have more than enough match-winners in their ranks.

He said: “Whoever you were going to play in the quarter-final, they would have had a really good tournament.

“Hampshire are a very strong team and recent history says they get to finals day a lot.

“They have some match-winners, but so have we, and I believe on any given day we can beat anyone in the country.

“It is fantastic that we have given ourselves the opportunity to prove that.”

The Rapids have named an unchanged squad to face the Hawks, the 11 in action against the Falcons plus Jake Libby, Matthew Waite and Ben Gibbon.

Worcestershire Rapids squad

  • Brett D’Oliveira ©
  • Jack Haynes
  • Mitchell Santner
  • Adam Hose
  • Kashif Ali
  • Ben Cox (W)
  • Ed Pollock
  • Usama Mir
  • Dillon Pennington
  • Pat Brown
  • Adam Finch
  • Jake Libby
  • Matthew Waite
  • Ben Gibbon