Club Captain Joe Leach says now is the time to convert the fruits of nine months of preparation work into practice in Worcestershire CCC’s opening Bob Willis Trophy encounter with Gloucestershire at Bristol starting today.
Leach and his team-mates reported back in early November to start preparing for the 2020 season which, because of the impact of COVID-19, they will finally get underway this week with the four-day competition.
There has been plenty of emphasis during that time on honing red ball skills and all the players have spent plenty of time at the crease or bowling overs during the intra-squad match at Blackfinch New Road and this week’s encounter with Warwickshire at Edgbaston.
Leach said: “As much hard work as we do from November onwards, you can’t recreate that feeling of being out in the middle, a day in the field. The warm-up matches have been a really valuable exercise.
“It has been a strange time for everyone and there is just that real excitement to be playing cricket.
“We’ve prepared from the start of November and our preparations for Saturday couldn’t have been much better given the situation everyone has been dealt with COVID-19. We’ve worked really hard on red ball cricket and you can certainly see the fruits of that labour beginning to develop within the group.
“We’ve worked really hard on red ball cricket and you can certainly see the fruits of that labour beginning to develop within the group.
Worcestershire will face four Division One sides in Gloucestershire, Northamptonshire, Warwickshire and Somerset in the group phase, but Leach said: “We will relish that challenge. We’ve made our ambition very clear in that we want to improve on what we displayed last year in red ball cricket.
“We feel we are a better side than what we showed last year and we’ve got five group games now to put into practice the changes we wanted to make to our red ball cricket in terms of applying ourselves for longer periods of time.”