Assistant Head Coach Paul Franks believes Notts Outlaws are starting to show just why they are the reigning T20 champions after an impressive all-round display in victory at the Leicestershire Foxes.
The Green and Golds were well below par in their first game of the Vitality Blast against the Birmingham Bears, losing by eight wickets.
But they won at the Northamptonshire Steelbacks on Friday night and triumphed by 19-runs on this occasion, with contributions from across the team.
As Notts posted 199-8 after being put in to bat, Samit Patel made 52 off 28 balls, Tom Moores 51 off 30 and Dan Christian 47 off 29.
Four bowlers – Christian, Patel, Steven Mullaney and Ish Sodhi then took two wickets apiece as the Foxes managaed 180-9 in reply.
“We were well short against the Bears, let’s not kid ourselves, and we looked like we needed that first run-out just to sharpen us all up,” said Franks.
“I thought our preparation for the tournament had been excellent, so I went home after the first game wondering where all that had come from because we weren’t very good at all.
“But since then we have responded really well and tidied things up really well. I’ve been really impressed with how our fielding has improved. With Paul Coughlin back in the side and marshalling the troops, Billy Root, who has been outstanding, Will Fraine and Riki Wessels we have four key fielders.
“There are a couple of lads who still need to get up and running, but they are quality players and over a long tournament they will find their feet. The sooner that happens the better obviously, but I believe the team will get stronger and stronger.”
Notts now have a break for a few days before their next match, a third away fixture in a row, at the Derbyshire Falcons on Friday night.
Franks says the team will head into that match with confidence and spirits lifted by how performances are starting to lick into place.
He added: “I thought Samit (Patel) showed some signs on Friday that he was starting to rediscover the quality and form that we know he has got and he carried it on well today.
“Dan (Christian) had an excellent day all round and Tom Moores also hit the ball very well. Across those three players the strike rate was excellent, which really set us a platform. We went on to set what I thought was a really commanding total.
“I think, more and more, people are starting to find some rhythm in the competition, which is important."
Notts Outlaws are next in action at Trent Bridge on Tuesday 17 July against Durham Jets. Be part of it - secure your seats now...