Notts Outlaws will go into this weekend’s fixture against Leicestershire Foxes knowing that a win will push them one step closer to securing a home quarter-final in the NatWest T20 Blast.
Assistant Manager Wayne Noon has spent a day watching Nottinghamshire’s second team face Warwickshire, with several representatives from the county’s T20 side taking part to stay sharp – James Franklin, Jake Ball and Sam Wood all impressing through the week.
“James probably needed a bowl,” said Noon.
“We’ve seen from the games he’s played so far that he’s seeing and striking the ball well.
“Playing for he second team was his idea, he wanted to keep fresh and keep playing between matches. He’s even looking for a Saturday club too.
“He scored a century in the 50-over game, and has captained the side in the three-day match. He’s been heavily involved throughout.”
The Leicestershire Foxes’ arrival in Nottingham will be the Outlaws’ final home game in the group stages of the competition, and a win will push them one step closer to securing a home quarter-final at Trent Bridge.
With fixtures against Northants and Yorkshire to follow, Noon is relishing the opportunity to reach the knockout stages, and is aware of the challenges brought by the Foxes.
“Two more wins would secure us that home quarter final,” he said.
“After the start we had, we were looking at just about securing a place in the top four, now we know that with a win or two we can play at home, in front of a big crowd who back us.
“Leicestershire have scored the most runs out of anyone in the North division.
“Their batting is their strong point, for them to get as close as they did to us in the match at Grace Road was impressive. We set a big total, and they got much closer than we would have liked.
“In comparison, their bowling is weaker and we’ll just have to work hard to put plans into practice on the afternoon.
“It’s such an open group, we’re not looking beyond Leicestershire. From there, we’ll go on to try and beat Northants.”
The Outlaws will welcome the return of opening batsman Michael Lumb to their squad for the Foxes clash, his first appearance in T20 cricket since being injured five weeks ago.
“Lumby will be into the squad this week, as long as he’s 100% fit after playing this week, as will Jake Ball,” he said.
“He’s been bowling well this week with the seconds, and if he doesn’t play any part in this match, we’d like to see him return either against Northants or Yorkshire later next week.”
Notts Outlaws squad to face Leicestershire Foxes (from): Alex Hales, Michael Lumb, Riki Wessels, Samit Patel, James Taylor, James Franklin, Chris Read, Steven Mullaney, Sam Wood, Ajmal Shahzad, Luke Fletcher, Harry Gurney, Jake Ball.
Notts Outlaws NatWest T20 Blast fixture and ticket information:
v Leicestershire Foxes – Sunday 20 July 2.30pm BUY TICKETS