Paul Franks is confident the Twenty20 Cup is bringing new skills and tactics into the game as Notts Outlaws prepare for their final group game with Lancashire at Trent Bridge.

With modern bat technology, shorter boundaries and flatter wickets generally favouring batsmen, bowlers have had to found ways to counter the glut of fours and sixes that can come in a Twenty20 game.

The result has been a wide variety of slower balls, bouncers and yorkers and Franks confirmed that plenty of hard work has been put in by the Notts bowling attack for this year’s competition.

He said: “We’ve been relatively consistent with the bowling and although everyone will cop it at the hands of the batsmen at some point, we’ve also all had various games where we have bowled accurately and taken wickets.

“We did a lot of practice this week as well - it’s no coincidence that the team’s performance has improved. We sat down as a group to look at what had been going wrong in the first half of the competition and see how we could turn it around.

“It’s funny how things have changed - when I was growing up the last thing you wanted to do was bowl a slow long hop, but that delivery is now an option.

“As a bowler you really can’t run up and bowl the same ball twice in a row. You have got to be prepared to try and alter the game and one of the things Chris Read and Mick Newell have stressed is that we should back ourselves and have no fear of failure.

“I’ve been trying a couple of variations which I wouldn’t have been comfortable with at all 18 months ago. There are always areas you can improve and learn and Twenty20 does force you to do that.”