MATCH PREVIEW: Lancashire v Warwickshire
MATCH PREVIEW: Lancashire v Warwickshire, Royal London One-Day Cup
Read our match preview ahead of the Lancashire v Warwickshire Royal London One-Day Cup clash at Blackpool Cricket Club.
Lancashire v Warwickshire,
Royal London One-Day Cup
Friday 25 May 2018
Blackpool Cricket Club
Consistency is going to be the key for Lancashire as they bid for success in this summer’s RL50.
There have been stages where the Red Rose county have played some exceptional cricket so far in the competition. But, unfortunately, that has not translated into wins as they have been unable to find the killer blow in defeats to Nottinghamshire and Northamptonshire.
They head to the seaside to take on the Bears (11am start) with a one win and two losses record from their opening three North Group matches.
While it is not a must win match by any means, Liam Livingstone and company could certainly do with winning. If they don’t, they will have little room for manoeuvre heading into the second half of the campaign later this weekend.
They come off the back of a nail-biting defeat to Northants at Wantage Road on Wednesday when the hosts chased down 280 off the penultimate ball to win.
Lancashire are, however, aiming for their second successive RL50 win at Blackpool having beaten Derbyshire there last year in a rain-affected thriller, with Stephen Parry doing the business with the bat at the end.
Warwickshire have lost one and won one so far in the North Group.
They lost at home to Derbyshire last Thursday before beating Yorkshire at Headingley on Sunday.
In batsman Sam Hain, they have a player who their sport director Ashley Giles believes is one of the best limited overs players in the country right now.
Hain, very Jonathan Trott-esque with his mannerisms at the crease though more expansive with his stroke play, has scored hundreds in both matches so far. And, since the start of last season, has averaged 83.3 in 10 innings in this competition.
The Bears are captained by wily New Zealand off-spinner Jeetan Patel, who returned 4-33 from 10 overs in that aforementioned Yorkshire match.
Winners of this competition in 2016, Warwickshire finished bottom of last season’s North Group with only two wins from their eight matches. They lost the other six.
Steven Croft hit a magnificent 127 off 83 balls in last May’s clash at Edgbaston as Lancashire racked up 351-8, supported by 55 from Dane Vilas, and held their nerve to win by 26 runs.
The Red Rose, having been invited to bat first, accelerated in some style during the second half of their innings having reached the 25-over mark at 130-3.
Croft, exploited a short boundary at the Hollies Stand side of the ground to hit a career best, sharing century stands for the fifth and sixth wickets with Vilas and Jordan Clark (32).
The Bears then lost wickets all too regularly in their chase, with Lancashire rarely looking like slipping up on the way to a first win in their fourth group game.
Simon Kerrigan’s left-arm spin returned figures of 3-60 from 9.3 overs following the early new ball strikes of Jonathan Trott and Ian Bell for Kyle Jarvis.
WHAT THEY SAID
Glen Chapple has called on his players to be sharper when it comes to their execution of plans after pointing to that as a downfall in defeat to Northants on Wednesday.
The Red Rose coach was pleased with the fight shown by his players and praised some individual contributors, including Dane Vilas for his unbeaten 83 and Matthew Parkinson for his 2-34 from 8.5 overs.
But he was frustrated at letting a winning opportunity slip, with former Lancashire player Luke Procter (43) guiding his side home from 199-5 in the 38th over.
“There’s a lot of things we need to have a think about,” said Chapple.
“Northants is a difficult place to play. We batted first on a used pitch and had a really good opening partnership - Alex Davies and Keaton Jennings played exceptionally well again.
“Unfortunately, we lost a few wickets through the middle part of the innings. We probably tried to play a bit square on a pitch that was low and a bit two-paced.
“It was better when you played down the ground.
“But we recovered, and Dane played magnificently. We got to a good score in the end. I certainly think it was over par by 10 or 15.
“Then Northants’ power play was in their favour. I don’t think we executed our plans. We had clear plans to make them play square of the wicket on a tired pitch, and we didn't manage to do that.
“Again, the team showed great fight and turned it round.
“It looked like it was going to be difficult for them. Joe Mennie and Jordan Clark really put pressure on their middle order. Then they had a partnership towards the end.
“Matthew Parkinson bowled exceptionally well, had good figures and nearly won the game right at the end.”