Kadeer Ali says the battling qualities in challenging situations shown by Worcestershire’s players in Second Eleven cricket this summer can only benefit their long-term development.
The Seconds have shown remarkable resilience in the last three Championship matches against Glamorgan at Newport, Leicestershire at Barnt Green and Warwickshire at Portland Road, Edgbaston, to earn a share of the spoils.
Taylor Cornall and Henry Cullen batted through the final day against Glamorgan and Leicestershire, and then Ismael Mohammed played a crucial knock versus Warwickshire after a thrilling run chase ended with honours even.
Seconds Coach Kadeer said: “Every red ball game in the Seconds, even including the warm-up matches, have been tight and pressured games.
“They have been fantastic for the lads, and they have responded by showing a lot of character.
“At Newport and Barnt Green, when it wasn’t feasible to win on the final day, we got stuck in with our backs to the wall and showed a lot of fight for long periods.
“In those games, the lads showed good discipline, kept it simple, valued their wickets, and defended and left well.
“It will be great for their development playing under that sort of pressure.”
Kadeer added: “The white-ball cricket has taken a front seat in the last five-ten years, and it is great to see lads batting three or four sessions, having that concentration for long periods.
“Some of the players wouldn’t be used to it, and when it was three-day cricket, you didn’t get that opportunity to bat for long periods.
“That is the beauty of the game turning into four-day cricket now, especially the Second Eleven, which has allowed the lads to bat for long periods.”
Ismael continued the promise he has shown in Academy cricket with his knock against Warwickshire.
Kadeer said: “He has done okay in Under-18 games, and it was nice for him to get stuck in and have a good contribution, a match-saving contribution.
“It was a matter of time, really, because he is a talented lad, and it just needed one knock to get him going and hopefully, it’s the start of something now for him.
“He played a brilliant knock and showed a lot of maturity throughout the innings.”
All of Worcestershire’s players will be back in training on Wednesday in preparation for either the LV=Insurance County Championship match with Middlesex at Merchant Taylors School or the Second Eleven Championship match with Nottinghamshire at Notts Sports Club, both beginning next Monday.