Thursday, July 11th, 2024

Squad & Preview | Rapids vs Foxes

Worcestershire Head Coach, Alan Richardson, has paid tribute to the contribution of West Indian leg spinner, Hayden Walsh, particularly after he was only called into the Rapids Vitality Blast squad at the 11th hour.

Walsh had only three days notice to link up with Worcestershire as a last gasp overseas replacement for Pakistan leg spinner Usama Mir in the Blast.

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But he has responded by being Worcestershire’s most economical bowler going into tonight’s home Blast fixture with Leicestershire Foxes (5.30pm start).

Walsh has conceded only 6.98 runs per over and onlyonce has he given away more than 30 runs in his four-over spells.

He has also produced some quality wicket-taking deliveries such as the googly which dismissed Lancashire captain, Keaton Jennings, in Sunday’s narrow defeat at Emirates Old Trafford.

Richardson said: “I think Hayden has done remarkably well. If you start with the situation when he was brought in, our first game was on a Thursday, we called him on the Monday before and he was here with us on the Tuesday.

“It is a remarkable effort. I think he has fitted into the changing room really well, he is a very popular member, and he has tried his absolute heart out for us.

“He has shown an enormous amount of skill and game play to get himself through those games and be as effective as possible.

“It has been a real pleasure having him around and he has made his mark certainly in amongst our games.”

Regarding his economy rate, Richardson added; “The period of time he bowls, teams are starting to look to get going and playing aggressively, especially if they’ve had a good powerplay.

“What Hayden has been able to do is give us some control during the middle of the innings when we have been bowling and also chipped in with some vital wickets.

“His dismissal of Keaton Jennings (Lancashire) was probably one of the best balls he has bowled, it was a terrific googly.

“He has started to show off his skill set but first and foremost the way he has gone about his business at such short notice has been nothing short of remarkable.”

Nathan Smith is again likely to be absent with a tight hamstring and fellow pace bowler Adam Finch (knee) is definitely ruled out and Richardson said: “He will not be in the squad for a little while.”

Richardson is looking for Worcestershire to get back to winning ways after being edged out in several games which could have gone either way.

He said: “It doesn’t take a genius to work out it hasn’t gone anywhere near as well as we would have liked.

“I don’t think it hasn’t been through lack of effort. We just haven’t quite got over the line in the close games we’ve played, which has been disappointing.

“For the majority of the time, the performances have been solid but not spectacular and we haven’t done quite enough to win those games of cricket.

“For us in these last four games, it’s an opportunity for us to keep evolving as a side, keep trying to get better, keep putting in performances.”

Thursday’s match is sponsored by Profile Store.

Worcestershire Rapids
3 Josh Cobb
6 Matthew Waite
7 Ed Pollock
9 Gareth Roderick (w)
12 Tom Taylor
13 Henry Cullen
14 Olly Cox
15 Brett D’Oliveira (c)
27 Kashif Ali
41 Harry Darley
54 Adam Hose
77 Ethan Brookes
86 Hayden Walsh
88 Rob Jones