Sunday, August 10th, 2014

Rhodes Salutes Record-Breaking Performance As Batsmen Execute Plans To Perfection

Rhodes Salutes Record-Breaking Performance As Batsmen Execute Plans To Perfection

Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes hailed a superb record-breaking batting performance by Worcestershire in yesterday's seven wicket win over Lancashire Lightning in the Royal London One-Day Cup at New Road.

Worcestershire reached a 305 target with 15 balls to spare – the highest total they have successfully chased down in 50 over cricket.

Skipper Daryl Mitchell (88) and Tom Fell laid the platform during a second wicket stand of 137 in 27 overs before Alexei Kervezee (63) and Ross Whiteley (45) sealed victory during an unbroken stand of 89 in 8.3 overs.

Rhodes said: "I'm absolutely delighted. It's the first time we've pulled off our batting plan exactly how we wanted it to be.

"Ironically it's the first time we've chased runs as well in this competition so we are delighted to get there.

"A lot of hard work was done by Tom Fell and Daryl Mitchell originally and the two finishers at the end there, Alexei Kervezee and Ross Whiteley, finished off a wonderful chase comfortably in the end."

Worcestershire bounced back in style from the NatWest T20 Blast quarter-final defeat at Surrrey and the setback away to Yorkshire in the One-Day Cup.

Rhodes said: "I think they believe in each other though and they've got a lot of confidence in each other.

"We had a real power batting unit against Lancashire when you consider Gareth Andrew, who has just got two hundreds in the second team, was about to come in.

"There was Ben Cox who has gone well and Joe Leach in nick so we've got quite a few power hitters towards the end of our innings. That's going to hold us in good stead."

Whitely has looked full of confidence since his amazing nine sixes in the T20 Blast win over Derbyshire just over a fortnight ago.

Rhodes said: "That last burst and the way he can hit the ball out of the park, is incredible really. The way he can get it over the New Road stand is just incredible.

"But I was more pleased with the way he played the short ball. He was pulling the ball in front of square and behind square and that forced them to try and bowl some yorkers and that can be right up his street as well.

Daryl and Tom set it up and they did it in a really controlled manner, one of the areas where possibly we've not been doing things,but let's be fair on the batsmen.

"We've been batting first in really tricky conditions and early morning starts on numerous occasions now so it's not been easy to do exactly what we want which is to put partnerships together and not lose too many wickets early.

"It was easier in that sense because we could bat at 2.30 when the wicket wasn't as juicy but having said that, we still had to chase down a total and we did that.

"The message at half-time was just do the batting plan. We set about our batting plan to get 300 and we had a little bit more opportunity to do it because the ball didn't jag around as much as in some of the games we have played so far."

Rhodes was also full of praise for the wicket produced by head groundsman Tim Packwood.

He said: "The one person who hasn't had a mention is the groundsman Tim Packwood who has produced a very good wicet.

"There have been 600 runs scored for not many wickets but what a game of cricket for people to watch, a good crowd.

"He has played his part with a very good wicket."