Alan Richardson praised the application shown by Worcestershire CCC openers Daryl Mitchell and Jake Libby as they and the rest of the batting group look to foil the Durham attack on the final day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match at the Emirates Riverside.
Worcestershire will resume on 60-0 in pursuit of a 423 target after Mitchell and Libby came through 14 overs yesterday evening unscathed against a probing Durham attack.
It will be a sizeable challenge but one Assistant Coach-Bowing Coach Richardson said the players feel confident they have a chance of achieving – and in the process maintaining their unbeaten record.
He said: “It is up to the players to show the resilience that so far we have shown this season and Daryl and Jake proved that in that last hour which was a real tricky session.
“The guys applied themselves brilliantly well. They are facing a very good attack, with a very quick bowler in Mark Wood, but the boys stood up to him and the other seamers and showed a great deal of character and spirit.
“You have to bat all day? The boys have done it really well this year where they have applied themselves with the bat for long periods.
“It will be a test no doubt but it is one the guys are confident that have given themselves a chance of doing.
“Potentially the pitch is a little bit slower. It has lost a bit of that carry. As a batting group, if you apply yourselves, you have got a chance of batting for long periods of time and that is what we have got to hope for and strive to do tomorrow.”
Durham advanced from 79-1 to 389-5 declared with Will Young and Jack Burnham both scoring centuries.
Richardson said: “It was a tough day. Things didn’t go our way and we probably didn’t quite execute with the ball and Durham played really well.
“Will Young and Jack Burnham played with a great deal of skill and patience on a wicket which has assisted a little bit throughout. They made it difficult for us to make inroads.
“You pick up an early wicket and hope we can keep chipping away but probably the belief of the players, having not picked up lots of wickets in five rounds of matches, was lacking a bit and we have to trust ourselves and have confidence that it will come.
“Durham put themselves in a position where they could put us under a lot of pressure and score freely and did that very effectively.”