Match Preview: Leicestershire vs Lancashire
Leicestershire v Lancashire
Royal London One-Day Cup
Thursday May 31, 2018
Lancashire are at the point of no return in the North Group.
Three defeats from five matches so far, they simply can’t afford any more slip-ups if they are to advance to the knockouts by finishing in the top three places - most likely third place.
Even three wins may not guarantee them progression, but at least it would give them a fighting chance.
They face a Leicester side who are bottom of the North having lost four from five with only one win. Lancashire are only one point above them on three, separated by last Friday’s No Result against Warwickshire at Blackpool.
Tomorrow’s fixture is another 11am start and sees twin brothers Matt and Callum Parkinson go up against each other.
Lancashire will be forced into at least one change given in-form opening batsman Keaton Jennings has been recalled to England’s Test team to face Pakistan at Emerald Headingley from Friday.
That means the ex-Durham left-hander could miss the rest of the North Group.
All of Lancashire’s remaining three matches are scheduled before the end of the Test, but he could feasibly return for next Tuesday’s Roses clash at Emirates Old Trafford should the Test finish inside four days.
Leicestershire are having a campaign to forget.
Things started promisingly for the Foxes with an opening day win over Northamptonshire, but they have since lost four on the bounce to leave them needing snookers to qualify.
Their latest defeat came against Worcestershire at New Road yesterday when the hosts chased down a target of 377 to win by six wickets with 16 balls to spare. It was the highest successful run chase in English one-day cricket.
The Foxes are now captained by former Red Rose County Championship-winning opening batsman Paul Horton, who has recently replaced Michael Carberry - relieved of his duties after a poor start to the season.
Their overseas player is Indian fast bowler Varun Aaron.
Last May, Lancashire lost their 50-over opener against the Foxes at Emirates Old Trafford, by three wickets on Duckworth Lewis Stern.
Leicestershire chased down a revised target of 309 in 49 overs thanks to half-centuries for openers Mark Pettini and Cameron Delport and another for Australian left-hander Mark Cosgrove.
Lancashire had set a competitive target with the bat as their 314-8 was built upon Haseeb Hameed’s 88 on his List A debut.
Leicester then started their chase well but stumbled to 244-6 in the 41st over, with Pettini, Delport and Cosgrove back in the pavilion. However, useful lower order contributions from Tom Wells (32), Zak Chappell (24) and Rob Sayer (18) saw them home with four balls to spare.
Neither side qualified for the knockout stages.
WHAT THEY SAID:
It will be a family day out for the Parkinsons, with Matt and Callum playing against each other for the second time in first-team cricket.
They both played in last year’s T20 Blast game at Grace Road, which Lancashire won.
“It will be good to play against Callum again,” said Matt.
“I think Oakham School have put on a box, so my Dad’s got one and there’s some family coming down. It should be a good day, and hopefully the weather’s nice again.
“I’m wanting a Red Rose win, Callum is wanting a Foxes win, but my Mum and Dad want a tie!”
Matt went on: “It’s been a frustrating competition so far for us.
“The lads went in with high hopes. I think we still have the squad to do well in that comp, and it’s a frustration that we haven’t shown the other teams and our supporters the white ball side that we think we are.
“We have been unlucky to a degree.
“I think the games against Notts and Northants, we played good cricket and came out on the wrong side of good games. The last game against Worcester, we weren’t good enough. And the lads know that.
“We have to put that behind us and put three good showings in. Fingers crossed, four wins and a rained off will be enough to get that third place.
“Leicester are a dangerous white ball side, very similar to Northants and Derby - teams who focus more on white ball than red.
“No team has run away with it so far. Teams have been beating each other, so we’re not out of it. But we are only one more defeat away from being out.”