worcestershire rapids skipper joe leach saluted callum ferguson’s magnificent 192 on debut and believes it is amongst the best innings seen at New Road.
the australian batsman smashed five sixes and 21 fours in his 143 ball knock as the rapids chased down a 377 target against leicestershire foxes in the royal london one-day cup.
it was the highest list a score by a worcestershire batsman, beating tom moody’s 180 against surrey at the oval in the 1994 natwest trophy semi-final.
leach said: “i don’t really know how to debrief that or give any kind of constructive interview to be honest! callum ferguson has played one of the best knocks i’ve ever seen.
“i’ve just said in the changing room that this ground has seen a lot of great players play great innings and that probably goes right into the top echelon.
“it was superb. i think graeme hick, wg grace, you name them, they would all have been proud of that knock.
“all i’m going to do is keep coming out with adjectives like ‘superb, brilliant, fantastic.’ it was the highest quality of innings you would ever wish to see.
“but it was the perfect chase. guys came in and batted around callum and injected the innings with impetus.
“dolly came in after mitch’s brilliant cameo and ensured it didn’t go ‘bang, bang, bang’ and suddenly we were six down and needing eight an over and then it becomes a bit hairy.
“we’ve won at a canter really and possibly could even have won it a bit earlier, it was that convincing.
“i still stand by what i said after the durham game and we should be sat here with five wins out of five.
“but we’ve won two games that were improbable on the back of that so that shows the character of the group and hopefully that will stand us in good stead.”
ferguson said: “it was a game really that could define our season. that has really set up the rest of the season for us in one-day cricket and is a really good momentum builder for us.
“i was just really grateful to get the opportunity to play here. to play domestic cricket over here, was something i was really excited to get the chance to do.
“to be able to get off on the right foot and make some runs is really exciting. it is certainly better than nought on debut!
“i had a few nerves coming into the game and was really pleased to be able to make an impact and hopefully we can keep the ball rolling in the next few games.
“we did get a reasonable start but we certainly didn’t fly through the first few overs and losing mo (moeen ali) was a big blow for us as we all know the quality he brings to the table.
“but certainly once we got going, it just seemed to flow quite nicely and the ball did seem to be hitting the middle of my bat from early on so that was good.
“to get the runs with a couple of overs to spare was something special.”
ferguson added: “all the other guys played positive but also played smart as well. there wasn’t too much loose stuff. they were just playing good cricket shots and on that wicket, it seemed to be the way to go.
“but certainly it was a daunting chase and to get there with a couple of overs to spare, there is no way you would have thought that would happen at the half-way mark.”