Leicestershire Foxes v Yorkshire Vikings – Harry Brook hopes T20 Blast can put him in ‘The Hundred’ shop window

HARRY BROOK says that county cricketers are even more determined to impress in this year’s T20 Blast to put themselves in the shop window for the 100-ball competition that starts next summer.

By The Newsroom
Tuesday, 23rd July 2019, 6:55 am
Yorkshire's Harry Brook, pictured in Saturday's defeat at Derbyshire. Picture: Tony Johnson.
Yorkshire's Harry Brook, pictured in Saturday's defeat at Derbyshire. Picture: Tony Johnson.

The Yorkshire batsman said that it was a “massive” inspiration for himself and his colleagues as they seek to get their names into the player draft for The Hundred that takes place on October 20.

Up to 96 county professionals are expected to be snapped up by the eight city-based franchises including the Northern Superchargers side based at Emerald Headingley, which is set to be coached by Darren Lehmann, the former Yorkshire batsman and ex-Australia coach.

The draft will be screened live on Sky television with the matches themselves being shown live on Sky and the BBC.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Yorkshire's Harry Brook celebrates as he reaches 100 in the recent Championship win over Somerset at Headingley. Picture: John Clifton/SWpix.com

“The Hundred is a massive inspiration for players taking part in the T20 this year,” admitted Brook.

“I think every player who is playing in the T20 is going to want to get picked up, and quite a lot of players will expect themselves to get picked up.

“I’d love to be picked myself and, hopefully, I’ll do well enough to get the chance. But, if I don’t, so be it and I’ll carry on pushing for a spot the following year.”

The Hundred has attracted controversy, with various polls indicating that 90 per cent of existing cricket fans are opposed to the brainchild of the England and Wales Cricket Board.

Many within the game, however, are in favour, including the hierarchy at Yorkshire CCC, which believes it will be a rip-roaring success that will transform the sport in this country for the better.

Brook concurs that the format will be a great spectacle and help to promote cricket to a wider audience.

A five-week window will be carved into the middle of the season to accommodate the tournament, with the County Championship being pushed back into the season’s margins and the 50-over Royal London Cup being held at the same time as The Hundred as a development competition shorn of the best county/overseas talent.

“Personally, I think The Hundred will be good,” said Brook. “It’s something different, isn’t it? It’s something for everybody to try and get into.

“I think everybody wants to play in it and it’s going to be a really good tournament.

“Hopefully, it’s going to be really successful.”

Brook’s next chance to advance his own claims comes tonight when Yorkshire play their third match in the 14-game T20 group stage against Leicestershire at Grace Road (6.30pm).

The 20-year-old was dismissed for seven runs in the five-wicket defeat to Derbyshire at Chesterfield on Saturday after Yorkshire’s opening fixture in the competition against Nottinghamshire at Headingley the previous night was washed out.

Yorkshire will be without pace bowler Matthew Fisher, who suffered a dislocated right shoulder while fielding in the game at Chesterfield.

The club are awaiting the results of a scan. Left-arm spinner James Logan (lower back) is also unavailable.

Leicestershire’s opening match, against Lancashire at Grace Road on Friday, was also washed out.

The Foxes were then hammered by seven wickets by Birmingham Bears at Edgbaston on Sunday in a dire showing which saw them score just 115-9 from their 20 overs.

They should be cannon fodder for a strong Yorkshire team, but their captain, Colin Ackermann, said: “We just have to do the basics well.

“The boys will be up for it and it’s all systems go.

“We will look at Yorkshire’s players individually before the game.

“We have played against a few of them in the past, so already know their strengths and weaknesses, and we will have plans in place for all of them.”

Yorkshire’s fourth group match on Thursday is the high-profile Roses encounter against Lancashire at Headingley.

Brook is especially hopeful of locking horns with the old enemy having never played a T20 Roses match before.

“To be fair, at the start of the year, I was looking at the fixtures and thinking that I hope I’m playing in that game, (against Lancashire)” he said.

“Personally, I think it’s the best game around, and although I haven’t played in it yet, when I’ve been 12th-manning in the past the atmosphere has just been ridiculous.

“To play against the old enemy, as we call them, our big rivals is great, and, if we beat them, it’s even better.

“I really want to play in that game because it’s always a great fixture in any format.”

Yorkshire squad versus Leicestershire (from): Ballance, Bess, Bresnan, Brook, Kohler-Cadmore (captain), Lyth, Olivier, Pillans, Pooran, Poysden, Tattersall, Thompson, Willey.