23rd Mar, 2019

Rapids are eyeing home comforts

Rob George 23rd Jul, 2015 Updated: 19th Oct, 2016

WORCESTERSHIRE Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes is urging his side to complete a successful Natwest T20Blast group campaign by securing a home quarter-final.

The Rapids can ensure a last eight tie at New Road with victory over Lancashire Lightning on Friday.

However, they will be guaranteed a home quarter-final for the first time if Northants Steelbacks lose against Birmingham Bears at Edgbaston tonight (Wednesday).

The Rapids have won six games on the bounce away from New Road since losing to the Bears at Edgbaston in their opening game of the 2015 campaign.

Among the scalps claimed on the road were 2013 winners Steelbacks and a quartet of counties playing on test grounds in the shape of Durham Jets, Lancashire Lightning, Notts Outlaws and Yorkshire Vikings before Friday’s triumph over Derbyshire Falcons.

Big hitting from Ross Whiteley saw a 74-run win at Headingley against the Vikings, who boasted the likes of Glenn Maxwell, Andrew Gale and Tim Bresnan in their ranks.

However, despite the away day glory, Rhodes is nevertheless determined to try and secure a home quarter-final for the sake of supporters and the financial boost it would give to the club.

“Our away form has been tremendous. We were talking about it and who wants a home quarter-final when you are playing as well as this away from home?!,” he said.

“But no, we are desperate to play at home in a quarter-final so hopefully we will carry on winning.

“Our fans and supporters deserve that and it would be a good money-spinner for the club if we can sell out a quarter-final.

“Hopefully we can make it for the supporters,” he added.

Meanwhile, Worcestershire were up against it in their latest LV= Division One County Championship clash with leaders Yorkshire.

As the Observer went to press, the Pears were 150-4 in their second innings, level with the Tykes.

Worcestershire were asked to follow on after being bowled out for 280 in their first innings, 150 behind Yorkshire’s first innings total of 430.

MOEEN Ali has retained his place in England’s 13-man squad for the third Ashes test at Edgbaston next Wednesday.

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