Worcestershire Seconds will look to replicate the excellent form demonstrated against Somerset when they take on Lancashire Seconds in a Second Eleven Championship match at Stourport beginning today (Monday).
Second Eleven Coach Kadeer Ali was full of praise for the performance in triumphing by 269 runs at Taunton Vale mid-way through the final session on the fourth day.
Five Worcestershire batsmen scored half-centuries, including Alex Milton, who passed the fifty mark in both innings. At the same time, Josh Tongue bowled with consistent pace in picking up eight wickets as he continues to build up his match fitness after injury.
It followed on from a closely fought game against Gloucestershire at Kidderminster.
Kadeer said: “It was an excellent four-day game at Taunton, and I’m delighted for the lads and the work they put in over the four days.
“It went right to the wire, to five o’clock on the final day, and we put the hard yards in and deserved it and, over the four days, I felt we won every single session, which is a compliment for the lads.
“It was an outstanding effort, and we had to battle through some tricky periods in the game, and we came out on top.
“Five players got fifties, and that was pleasing to see. Guys got in at Kidderminster in the previous game and didn’t go on, but we’ve gone up a level. There is still room for improvement, and I would still like to see a couple of the guys getting hundreds.
“But we had a good opening partnership with Jack Haynes and Josh Dell, who put on over a hundred in the first session and set up the game nicely for us.
“Ross Whiteley played beautifully for his 90, and Alex Milton was very positive when he batted and played beautifully as well. It was great to see, and hopefully, we can move on and kick on again.”
Kadeer added: “Is Josh Tongue getting close to full sharpness? One hundred per cent. He looks like he is very close now. He has been bowling nicely with some good pace.
“He was a little unlucky at Kidderminster when he beat the bat a lot, and so it was nice for him to get some reward at Taunton in terms of some wickets.
“He bowled quick, some spells were very sharp, and he didn’t hold back, which was great.”
Kadeer believes the switch from three-day to four-day cricket is proving beneficial.
He said: “I think it is significant because the game evolves its natural course. You don’t have to think about pulling out too early, and it allows the lads to bat time and replicate the first team scenario.
“It also allows me to see the bowlers come back in their third and fourth spells if need be, and this is where someone like Josh Tongue was brilliant, bowling the same pace in his first spell as he did in his third and fourth spells.
“The whole of the bowling unit bowled nicely. Ed Bragg picked up some wickets and bowled good areas and was consistent, so overall pleased with the ball and the bat.”
The game was initially scheduled to occur at Kidderminster but has been switched to Walshes Meadow, Stourport.
Alex Milton +
Ross Whiteley *