Skipper Joe Leach wants Worcestershire to build on last summer’s success and leave a lasting legacy after the release today (Tuesday) of the Specsavers County Championship and Royal London One-Day Cup fixtures for 2019.
Leach stressed the importance of “staying hungry” for more silverware after the Rapids unforgettable Vitality Blast triumph in mid September.
He wants the County to strive to emulate the triumphs of the 1980s and 1990s which decorate the walls of the Hick Pavilion.
Worcestershire will open their bid to regain their Division One status in the Championship at the first attempt with an away fixture against Leicestershire at the Fischer County Ground beginning on May 11.
There will be then be a month of One-Day Cup action with the Rapids going all out to try and repeat and improve on the success of 2017 and 2018 when they topped the North Group and earned two money-spinning home semi-finals.
The Rapids will have away games with Lancashire and Leicestershire before playing host to Durham in their opening home One-Day Cup game on April 24.
Durham will also be the opponents when Worcestershire will be in home Championship action for the first time from Tuesday, May 14.
There is a sizeable block of four-day cricket being staged from mid-May until the end of June when the Vitality Blast will take centre stage (fixtures to be released later today).
An added attraction for Worcestershire supporters will be a three-day fixture against Australia at Blackfinch New Road from August 7 to 9.
It is a real coup for the County to be awarded such an attractive fixture during Ashes year.
Leach said: We’ve been building towards something like that (winning the Vitality Blast) for a period of time and have been pretty vocal about our need to push onto that next level and challenge at the back end of tournaments.
“To do that two years in a row, with the two home semi-finakls in 50 over cricket, and now to put a trophy to our white ball cricket shows we are moving in the right direction.
“It vindicates everything we’ve been saying and doing over the past few years. It was a great day at Edgbaston and everyone wants to back it up.
“Next year is the last year at Lord’s for the 50 over competition and everyone would love to play in that.
“I’m sure every county is having the same thoughts but that Lord’s final….if we could go one step forward and get there, and put ourselves in the hunt for another trophy there, it would be special.”
Leach added: “We are also defending T20 (Blast) champions and we want to try and win Division Two (in the Championship). We’ve got three trophies that we are absolutely going to go all out for.
“It’s easy to sit in November and say you want to win this, that and the other but we genuinely have a legitimate chance.
“We were the best white ball team in the country last season. We have to stay hungry and put together a bit of a legacy for this team.
“You go downstairs into the Hick Pavilion and look at success of the 80s, 90s and that’s something we want to achieve here.”
Worcestershire will be part of the Cheltenham Festival in 2019 when they take on Gloucestershire in a Championship match from July 21 and end the campaign in late September with a trip to Hove to face Sussex.
Specsavers County Championship Fixtures 2019
|Leicestershire||Thursday 11th April||The Fischer County Ground, Grace Road|
|Durham||Tuesday 14th May||Blackfinch New Road|
|Lancashire||Monday 20th May||Emirates Old Trafford|
|Middlesex||Monday 27th May||Blackfinch New Road|
|Lancashire||Monday 10th June||Blackfinch New Road|
|Sussex||Monday 17th June||Blackfinch New Road|
|Glamorgan||Sunday 30th June||Sophia Gardens, Cardiff|
|Derbyshire||Sunday 7th July||Blackfinch New Road|
|Durham||Saturday 13th July||Emirates Riverside|
|Gloucestershire||Sunday 21st July||Cheltenham|
|Northamptonshire||Sunday 18th August||Northampton|
|Glamorgan||Tuesday 10th September||Blackfinch New Road|
|Gloucestershire||Monday 16th September||Blackfinch New Road|
|Sussex||Monday 23rd September||The 1st Central County Ground|
Royal London One-Day Cup Fixtures 2019
|Lancashire||Wednesday 17th April||Emirates Old Trafford|
|Leicestershire Foxes||Sunday 21st April||The Fischer County Ground, Grace Road|
|Durham||Wednesday 24th April||Blackfinch New Road|
|Northants Steelbacks||Friday 26th April||Northampton|
|Warwickshire||Sunday 28th April||Blackfinch New Road|
|Notts Outlaws||Wednesday 1st May||Blackfinch New Road|
|Yorkshire Vikings||Saturday 4th May||Blackfinch New Road|
|Derbyshire Falcons||Monday 6th May||The County Ground, Derby|
Vitality Blast Fixtures 2019
|Notts Outlaws||Thursday 18th July||Trent Bridge|
|Birmingham Bears||Friday 19th July||Blackfinch New Road|
|Lancashire Lightning||Friday 26th July||Emirates Old Trafford|
|Durham Jets||Sunday 28th July||Blackfinch New Road|
|Derbyshire Falcons||Wednesday 31st July||Blackfinch New Road|
|Yorkshire Vikings||Friday 2nd August||Emerald Headingley|
|Leicestershire Foxes||Sunday 4th August||Blackfinch New Road|
|Northants Steelbacks||Sunday 11th August||Blackfinch New Road|
|Derbyshire Falcons||Tuesday 13th August||The County Ground, Derby|
|Durham Jets||Thursday 15th August||Emirates Riverside|
|Birmingham Bears||Friday 23rd August||Edgabston|
|Lancashire Lightning||Sunday 25th August||Blackfinch New Road|
|Notts Outlaws||Wednesday 28th August||Blackfinch New Road|
|Northants Steelbacks||Friday 30th August||Northampton|