Yorkshire CCC: Durham setback can spur us on to Roses triumph – Gale

Yorkshire's Gary Ballance and Alex Lees on the run against Durham.

Yorkshire's Gary Ballance and Alex Lees on the run against Durham.

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Sunday’s Roses clash against Lancashire in the County Championship at Old Trafford has come at a really good time for us.

The situation is very similar to how we felt after losing in the Twenty20 and not qualifying and then the following day, we went over there and had a really big win.

Now we go into the game following our exit to Durham in the one-day competition and we’re going to be positive to try and win the Championship.

I can tell people that the lads in the dressing room have the bit between their teeth as this is now our only chance of winning a trophy this year.

It is simply a massive game for both teams. They are fighting against relegation and will be definitely up for the fight and will probably still be a bit bitter after losing last week’s Twenty20 final as well.

It’s a big week for them as well. But ultimately, it’s about what we do and a massive week for us. We know that if we get our skills right, they are a team we can beat.

But they are not to be underestimated and have some good performers who haven’t performed to the best of their ability this year. We must go there and perform ourselves.

The next three games are huge and I keep on banging onto the lads about getting our processes right and that’s all it is. We can’t get ahead of ourselves; it’s about the first session and then going on and winning it session by session and ticking them off. If we do that, win more sessions than them, we’ll be in a good position.

Hopefully we will have some good weather; you can’t always trust it in Manchester. But given that, tomorrow in particular with it being the weekend, there will be a good crowd in and a bit of an atmosphere.

Jack Brooks and Tom Smith for them are at the top of the bowling charts and there’s a bit of competition for them. Smith has had a fantastic year and got runs as well to get them out of trouble. He’s definitely a performer we must keep our eye on to get the better of him.

Obviously, Jack has had a fantastic year and been our ‘go-to’ man when we have needed a wicket. It will be a nice little battle between them.

Personally, I woke up with a bit of a hangover in terms of the Durham game on Friday and it was hard to swallow really.

It was our game to lose from the position we were in and just panicked a little bit.

One of the top six did not go big and one of their’s did, so we only have ourselves to blame for that.

That’s professional sport. What happened against Durham, we have also done to teams this season and other teams have done it to us.

It just so happened that this time it occurred in a quarter-final when you only have one chance.

Our form has not been great at Headingley all season in one-day and Twenty20 cricket and it is something we will have to look at. It seems to be that we play better away from home; whether that is down to pitches or our attitude towards playing, I am not sure.

It will have to be something we look at.

We reviewed the game after and had an open and frank conversation. The lads were obviously very emotional, but I think the best time to review a game is straight after when it is fresh in everyone’s mind.

We were honest about our own performances and individuals put their hands up and said they did not quite get it right.

That is what you want. You do not want guys hiding behind excuses. The batsmen in particular know they let themselves down.

Obviously, the ice-bucket craze has caught on everywhere and I think every Yorkshire player has done one now. It’s great everyone is united behind a good cause and it’s a bit of a laugh as well.

There’s been quite a few funny ones. Hoddy did it in his Lord Hawke blazer and Yorkshire tie. I got nominated by Durham’s captain, so he’s probably had the last laugh with Thursday. Patto also nominated me and I nominated Anthony McGrath and Hoddy.

I see Leeds are looking for a new head coach and having watched the Bradford cup game, I thought Luke Murphy let David Hockaday down by being sent off.

Hockaday didn’t come with a massive reputation. But if you take him on, you must give him a chance. You can’t prove anything in six games, especially when you have four players sent off.

Leeds players have got to look at themselves as they were the ones who got him the sack.

As much as I am a big Huddersfield Town fan, I look out for Yorkshire teams and seeing how Leeds are going at the minute is sad.

***Our exclusive Andrew Gale column is in association with Blacks Solicitors***

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