Vikings ready for T20 kick off

Yorkshire vikings logo
Yorkshire vikings logo

Yorkshire Vikings kick off their T20 campaign on friday night against Northamptonshire Steelbacks at Headingley and coach Jason Gillespie is looking to start with a win.

The Vikings had a disappointing campaign in the shortest form of the game in 2013, something Gillespie is keen to put firmly in the past.

He said: “It would be nice to start with a win, obviously. I think in 2012 we lost our first game and still made Finals Day. People say you’ve got to start well, but I think you’ve got to finish well as well. But it would be nice for us to start off with a win.

“Our goal is to win every game. Whether that’s achievable or not, I don’t know, but that’s what we’ll be trying to do.”

Gillespie added: “You’ve seen over the last few years we’ve had guys who specialise in one form of the game over the other, which is fine. I think you absolutely need a squad mentality when you play county cricket, even when you play just Championship cricket.

“There’s three distinct forms of the game and it would be foolish to think that every player can play every single game. Some guys need a break. We took the opportunity to give Siddy (Ryan Sidebottom) a break for the Warwickshire match and we know that he’ll be fresh, fit and firing come Friday night.

“It would have been a big ask for Siddy after four Championship matches on the bounce to have played against Warwickshire with the T20 starting on Friday. We just have to be smart and utilise our assets wisely. We look at in on a needs basis really. It’s just good communication and managing the bowlers as best we can to give them the best chance of getting through the season.”

Having only been involved in County Championship action so far, Gillespie is confident that his team will have no issue switching to the T20 game.

“I think these guys are professional cricketers, and there’s a term that’s come into cricket in the last few years, where people talk about red-ball and white-ball skills, and I just think that it’s a cricket ball, quite frankly. The skills are cricket skills. I think they’re transferrable between games,” he said.

“There’s yorkers bowled in long-form cricket, slower balls, bouncers, and so on. It’s not just confined to white-ball cricket. I think skills are absolutely transferrable and it’s more about the mindset. You have to have a really positive, aggressive attitude to one-day cricket and we’ll certainly be taking that into the tournament. We’ll just prepare as best we can.”