Worcestershire are to play five of their front-line batsmen in tomorrow’s Second Eleven Trophy clash with Warwickshire at Blackfinch New Road.
Head Coach Kevin Sharp hopes the 50 over fixture will help players in their bid to help regain form and confidence ahead of Friday’s Specsavers County Championship encounter with Surrey at the Kia Oval.
Daryl Mitchell, Joe Clarke – who will keep wicket – Tom Fell, Brett D’Oliveira and George Rhodes are all included of the side beaten by Nottinghamshire at Blackfinch New Road today.
The seamer-friendly pitches after the recent wet weather have proved challenging for batsmen all around the country in the three rounds of Championship matches to date.
Sharp confirmed: “Tomorrow we’ve got a Second Eleven game here against Warwickshire, a 50 over game, and five of the top six batsman who played against Nottinghamshire are playing.
“We are going to do everything we can to prepare for what is happening on Friday (against Surrey).
“I think we can all accept that this last three weeks has been difficult for batting in general. When you look at the scores around the country, teams are getting bowled out.
“Yes, there have been odd individuals who have made runs but generally there have been a lot of lads who have struggled and I think that is pretty understandable and down to the weather we have had.
“The pitches are moist and they are green – but we have still lost three matches and the opposition have been that much better than us but we recognise it.
“The lads have to take it on the chin for now but get better.”
Sharp added: “As a batter, if you’ve not spent hardly any time at the crease for three weeks and you’ve had six lowish scores, you are bound to lack a bit of confidence.
“That is human nature. It’s their job and if you are not doing well at your job, no matter what it is, you would be at times a little bit unsure of yourself.
“But that’s the game. It has always been like that, always will be like that, and it will be a test of character for them to come through.
“The only thing that will breed confidence is to spend some time in the middle.
“That’s why we want the lads to play tomorrow and, because it’s a white ball game, they will get a little bit more freedom to play some shots.
“I’m hoping two or three of them will spend some time at the crease and get that confidence we need for Friday.”
Fell made a determined 37 in Worcestershire’s second innings and is one of several players so far this season not to have capitalised after becoming established at the crease.
Sharp said: “Tom Fell has had a difficult year or two, we know that, and he is definitely on his way back now.
“He will actually be quite disappointed, as two or three of the batters are, who have made 30s and 40s.
“Sometimes batters will get knocked over early against a newer ball and it is very important when you have got guys who have got in, making 30,40,50, that they go on and make 80, 90, 100 runs.
“That makes a difference between making a team score of 150 and 250-300.”
12th man: Dell