MARTYN MOXON says that Yorkshire are still chasing silverware on two fronts as they approach the business end of the county season.
I think we’ve shown that we are capable if we can just get our act together.Martyn Moxon
The club’s director of cricket believes that they can still win the County Championship and also their first T20 crown.
Yorkshire are third in the Championship, 38 points behind leaders Essex with four games left, and although it will be a tall order to overhaul them and Somerset, who are four points behind in second place, Moxon remains hopeful.
In T20, Yorkshire are sixth in the North Group with four points from five matches, four points behind leaders Lancashire.
Speaking ahead of today’s T20 game against Worcestershire at Emerald Headingley (6.30pm), Moxon said: “There’s still everything to play for. In the Championship, you just never know. We lost down at Essex recently, but beating Surrey at Scarborough and then Somerset at Headingley shows what we’re capable of.
“We’ve still got to go to Taunton to play Somerset, which is a massive game, so if we can have a good last four matches, you never know.
“Somerset have also got to play Essex last game of the season. I know that we’re some way behind at the moment, but, if we win and the others lose, it can soon change.
“In T20, there’s everything to play for too and, hopefully, the weather will dry up and we can get on a roll. It’s been a bit stop-start so far, with two of our matches rained off, so we’re hoping to find a bit of momentum.”
After the washouts against Nottinghamshire at home and away to Northamptonshire, Yorkshire’s three completed games have brought a handsome win against Leicestershire and tight defeats to Derbyshire and Lancashire.
Moxon believes that the key is trying to eliminate errors.
“T20 is such a short game that small periods of play can be costly,” he said.
“Both against Derbyshire and Lancashire there were just phases of the game where we didn’t perform well enough and it costs you the match.
“We’ve got to try and avoid making too many mistakes. We lost two games that we could have won there, but we didn’t really play well enough for long enough to win them.
“But I think we’ve shown that we are capable if we can just get our act together, if you like. But T20 is always such a fine line. You look at (Matthew) Potts from Durham. He got a hat-trick one day and then went for 43 from his first two overs on another.”
Yorkshire are set to be boosted for the visit of second-placed Worcestershire by the return of World Cup winner Adil Rashid, who has had a fortnight’s break since the final.
Rashid is available for the rest of the tournament but, as reported yesterday, the club are unsure whether he will return to Championship action, citing his desire to manage a shoulder problem.
Yorkshire have re-signed South African left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj for their next two Championship games in any event, at home to Nottinghamshire at Scarborough from August 18 and away to Somerset at Taunton from September 10.
Maharaj is also available for T20 during that time, starting with the Roses encounter at Old Trafford on August 9.
Yorkshire will also be boosted tonight by the return of club captain Steve Patterson, who rested for the first five T20 games after a heavy period of Championship cricket.
Jack Shutt, the 22-year-old off-spinner, keeps his place in the squad but fellow spinner James Logan has been ruled out for the rest of the season with a stress fracture of the back.
Logan joins pace bowler Matt Fisher and leg-spinner Josh Poysden on the sidelines, with Poysden also out for the rest of the season after being struck on the head during net practice.
Fisher, who dislocated his shoulder and also broke his thumb during the game at Derbyshire, hopes to be back for September’s Championship matches.
“It was really disappointing for ‘Fish’,” said Moxon.
“To lose him and Josh Poysden, when you go into the T20 competition with a plan of what the team looks like and the type of players that you want in the team, to lose two key members of that team early on is a big blow.
“With the injuries that Matthew’s had recently, it’s also very cruel. He had worked so hard to get back into the team and was performing well, and to pick up two injuries in the same game was bizarre really.”
Yorkshire squad versus Worcestershire (from): Ballance, Bess, Bresnan, Brook, Kohler-Cadmore, Leaning, Lyth, Olivier, Patterson (capt), Pillans, Rashid, Shutt, Tattersall, Thompson, Willey.