24th Mar, 2019

Buoyant Rapids eye home semi

Rob George 6th Jun, 2018

RAPIDS chief Kevin Sharp has urged his side to continue reaching their ‘true potential’ and secure a home semi-final in the Royal London One-Day Cup with a win over Warwickshire Bears.

Victory against their local rivals tomorrow in front of the Sky Sports cameras will secure the Rapids top spot in the North group and put them one game away from the Lord’s final on June 30.

After a tough start to the season with four defeats in five Championship games, the Rapids have flourished in white-ball cricket with an array of big scores and impressive victories.

Sharp believes his charges are starting to combine resilience with skill and said he felt something special would happen at some point.

“I know it’s still early in the season and we are just over halfway in the One-Day Cup but we are in a good position now. It’s ours to get a grasp of and hopefully get a home tie. That’s what we are looking for.

“We’ve got a very good environment and culture. The lads, I believe, are enjoying their cricket. We are starting to play to our true potential now and long may that continue.

“There is a lot of resilience in this team and we also showed that in County Championship cricket although we didn’t get over the line in some of those games.

“There is a lot of fight and resilience and a lot of skill and talent and that is coming to the party now.”

Sharp also paid tribute to Callum Ferguson who followed up his record-breaking 192 – the highest in one-day cricket for Worcestershire – with 159 not out in the victory over Northamptonshire Steelbacks which put the Rapids in the driving seat for a semi-final place.

“His statistics are very good in red ball and white-ball cricket but that was as good an innings as you will see,” Sharp said.

“For him to have come in and done that on his debut, after only playing a couple of league matches (for Ombersley), was an exceptional performance.

“He is a fine bloke as well. He has been very professional the way he has gone about things and I’m sure he will make many more runs.”

Ferguson did not field against Northamptonshire Steelbacks as a precautionary measure but Sharp is optimistic the Aussie will be raring to go at Edgbaston.

“Callum had just a little bit of a strain in the quad but hopefully he will be okay. He has been icing it,” he said.

“He has batted a long time the last few days. It was a bit of a precautionary thing really.”

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