Thursday, August 13th, 2015

Rhodes Optimistic Of Rapids Success If They Repeat Previous T20 Blast Form

Rhodes Optimistic Of Rapids Success If They Repeat Previous T20 Blast Form

Steve Rhodes says Worcestershire Rapids can pull off a "very positive result" and clinch a first finals day spot in the NatWest T20 Blast if they can repeat the form previously shown this summer in tomorrow's home quarter-final with Hampshire.

Director of Cricket Rhodes has named a 14 strong squad – including skipper Daryl Mitchell who has been battling to overcome a hamstring injury.

Rhodes said that Mitchell is "on course" to face the 2010 and 2012 T20 Blast winners who have reached the last five finals days.

Moeen Ali also returns after enjoying the euphoria of England's Ashes triumph over Australia at Trent Bridge for his seventh appearance of 2015 in the competition.

The squad also includes Joe Clarke, who this week signed a new three year contract, Charlie Morris and Alexei Kervezee in addition to the players who have been in regular T20 Blast action this summer.

It will be exactly a month tomorrow since the Rapids were last in T20 Blast action away to Derbyshire Falcons on July 17 after the wash-out of their final game against Lancashire Lightning.

They will have to make at least one change from the side which triumphed against the Falcons as Colin Munro has joined up with New Zealand.

Rhodes said: "It is something to look forward to for our members, supporters, players and support team.

"They have had a fantastic campaign. It is sometimes easy to forget. It seems ages ago that we played a T20 game. It is easy to forget some of the really good stuff we did.

"We look forward to hopefully nailing it on the night. I'm sure Hampshire will come here full of optimism.

"They've been a successful T20 side for a number of years and got quite a few young players that are now quite mature and they will be difficult opposition – like all the sides in the quarter-final.

"But if we can produce anything like what we have done in some of the games in T20, we could well have a very positive result."

Moeen Ali's return will boost the Rapids batting and spinning options after being England's second top scorer and picking up nine wickets in the four Ashes Tests to date.

Rhodes said: "To have Moeen back for that big game, is a huge boost to the team and he has shown on a couple of occasions early on in the T20 what a devastating and dangerous player he is.

"We are delighted to welcome him back. He has been part of a very successful Ashes winning squad and we are delighted for him and England as well.

"To have him back at the top of the order, it makes a few of the opposition very wary of the power that he has got."

Rapids (from):


Moeen Ali