10:00am Saturday 28th June 2014
SKIPPER Daryl Mitchell has challenged the Worcestershire squad to maintain the standards set during the first half of the season when they return to LV= County Championship action against Glamorgan at New Road tomorrow (11am).
The County suffered a washout in last night’s NatWest T20 Blast clash with Nottinghamshire Outlaws at Worcester.
Now they are hoping a week’s break from action after a demanding programme will have recharged the batteries for the games ahead.
Worcestershire are lying second in Division Two of the championship and also challenging strongly in the T20 Blast North Group after six successive wins before yesterday’s abandonment.
Mitchell said: “Hopefully, we will come back revitalised and we’ve got most of our fixtures at home for the next six weeks, apart from the odd T20 game.
“We’ve enjoyed the break and then it is about looking forward to getting back into it.
“It’s all about keeping the momentum going. We’ve done fantastically well so far so bring on the next game.
“But it doesn’t matter where you are at this stage of the season. It’s all about where you are finish in September.
“We set our goals to get out of Division Two, so we’ve got to finish in the top two, and we want to get through the group stages first and foremost in the T20.
“We’ve not achieved any of those yet so it is all about keeping going and trying to achieve those goals.”
County director of cricket Steve Rhodes said: “We’ve just got a little bit more depth now and the younger players have matured a little bit and the senior players have as well.
“It means we are improving so it’s good at the moment.
“I’m getting carried away but I’m trying to make sure our team don’t get carried away. We’ve got to keep our feet firmly on the ground. We’ve won nothing yet.
“If we are going to win things, we need to keep it going all season long so we’ll try and keep the confidence high but feet firmly on the ground.”
Worcestershire will be boosted by the return of England century-maker Moeen Ali against fourth-placed Glamorgan after he was given permission to play by the England and Wales Cricket Board.
Moeen earned high praise for his unbeaten 108 in the second Investec Test with Sri Lanka at Headingley after batting through the entire final day to almost salvage a draw.
The majority of the England squad will meet up at Loughborough on Tuesday and Wednesday for a training camp ahead of the five-match series with India.
But Moeen, who is not centrally contracted to the ECB, will be allowed to turn out for the County against their Welsh opponents.
A final downpour at 6.50pm yesterday scuppered any hopes of Worcestershire being able to play even a reduced-overs match against Nottinghamshire.
Umpires Nick Cook and Paul Baldwin were left with no option but to abandon the game.
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