Saturday, July 19th, 2014

Rhodes Expecting “tough Game” With Falcons As T20 Blast Reaches Climax

Rhodes Expecting “tough Game” With Falcons As T20 Blast Reaches Climax

Worcestershire Rapids Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes is anticipating "a tough game" when his side take on Derbyshire Falcons in crucial Friday's NatWest T20 Blast clash at New Road.

The Rapids will book a quarter-final spot if they defeat the Falcons following last night's excellent win over Northampton Steelbacks under floodlights at Northampton Whether the Raids secure a home tie will depend on other results.

They are currently in second spot after overtaking Yorkshire Vikings who lost to Birmingham Bears who are also in contention to go through.

Rhodes told BBC Hereford-Worcester's Dave Bradley: "I see that Warwickshire (Birmingham) won and that makes it a little bit interesting.

"We will just try and do what we can do and that is to try and win a game of cricket.

"I don't look too far ahead and I know if we win,we are going to qualify. I'm looking forward to the game, I'm sure it will be a tough game.

"But Gloucestershire is next on the agenda, a four day match, and for me the most important one is the next one."

Rhodes was pleased with his side's performance against the Steelbacks.

He said: "With the bat we felt we were probably 10 short although Colin Munro felt it was a reasonable score when he was out there. He felt 160 was a decent score.

"We needed to bowl and field well and I thought we did that. I thought we bowled well upfront without much luck.

"We were a little bit worried that we didn't take wickets but then they started to fall and there were some real good efforts with the guys who took pace off the ball, Shaaiq Choudhry and Daryl Mitchell in particular, in securing the win.

"But it was too-ing and fro-ing the game and it was a lot closer than the outcome of 30 runs. We held our nerve and held some good catches and thankfully scoreboard pressure told for them."

Rhodes praised the efforts of Shaaiq Chudhry and five wicket skipper Daryl Mitchell with the ball.

He said: "Shaaiq bowled well. For his first start in the competition, it was a really good effort from Shaaiq and we are really pleased for him and hopefully he can add to that.

"It was the third time that pitch had been used and we did feel spin would be crucial. That's why we played both spinners and we tried to use Mitch as a bit of a spinner as well.

"It was what was needed (from Mitch) on that pitch and the good thing is he reads it pretty well and he knows how to bowl on those surfaces and he is a great fielder off his own bowling.

"I think he did three caught and bowleds so it was a good effort."

Rhodes has been pleased with the quality of the Rapids fielding in the competition.

He said: "I think we've fielded pretty well. We've only really struggled in the two games against Lancashire. I think generally our fielding has been top notch.

"We practice hard and every single ball is monitored for fielding so they know the areas they can improve and the areas that are going well.

"That's helped and if you field well, then you've got a chance. I'm pleased with the guys.

" For example, Tom Kohler-Cadmore struggled a bit with his fielding early on in this tournament and now he is one of our better fielders and credit to him.

"He is focused and his concentration is good and he has got a good pair of hands and he is quicker to the ball now."