Kevin Sharp says Worcestershire Rapids have a squad capable of again making “a real impact” in white ball cricket this summer as they gear up for the start of their Royal London One-Day Cup campaign.

The Rapids topped the North Group and reached the semi-finals last summer having reached the last eight in 2016.

Now they will launch the 2018 group programme at home to Derbyshire Falcons tomorrow (Saturday).

Head Coach Sharp believes a new competition to get to grips with is well timed after the challenging start to the Specsavers County Championship campaign.

He said: “We have a strong white ball team and we’ve been in quarter-finals and semi-finals in either the T20 or One-Day Cup in recent years.

“I’ve always thought with white ball cricket that we are dangerous and we are bringing in one or two players to add to things.

“It is an exciting squad. Unfortunately we just fell at the semi-final hurdle last year. We weren’t at our best on that day (against Surrey). That’s the game, that’s what happens.

“But we are in a position to really make an impact in that white ball cricket. These lads have played quite a bit of it now. They’ve had now some experiences and I think they are ready to go now, really, really compete.”

Sharp added: “A new competition at this moment in time is probably a good thing for us and I’m quite confident we will do well in that.

“We did some white ball training in Abu Dhabi. We played a game out there and also five of the six batters played in a second team 50 over match just before the Surrey game.

“Some of the bowlers have also had white ball sessions in the nets over the last few days so there have been bits and pieces going on.”

Sharp has been pleased with the overall performance of the side in the last two Championship matches despite the disappointment of being edged out by 32 runs against Essex at Blackfinch New Road on Sunday.

He said: “The result was a huge disappointment because I thought we played some excellent cricket in that game and we drove the game for huge parts of it. Not to get over the line was very disappointing.

“I’ve been really pleased with the lads the last two weeks. We’ve really competed against Surrey and Essex.

“We got into one or two positions against Essex where I thought we could drive it home and we probably didn’t have the rub of the green. Let’s just say that!

“The lads were really hurting afterwards because we really wanted to win and get our first result on the board and we didn’t do it. That hurts.

“It is human nature. We are in the game to win. You accept that doesn’t happen all the time but not to do it after playing a lot of cricket in the match, and driving the game, it hurts.

“I know everyone will be disappointed with the outcome, no more so than us, and we really did want to come back here, after under-achieving in the Notts game, and put it right.

“I think most of the time we did.”