Notts Outlaws will be looking to edge a little closer to guaranteeing a place in the knock-out stages of the Vitality Blast this weekend.
After the disappointment of losing their latest Specsavers County Championship match, to Yorkshire at Scarborough, they have a white-ball double-header that should make the qualification picture in the North Group a little clearer.
The Outlaws go to Leicester on Friday evening, before hosting Yorkshire Vikings at Trent Bridge on Sunday.
“We’ve played plenty of good competitive white-ball cricket and that’s what we’re focusing on right now,” head coach Peter Moores said.
“We’re just looking to make sure we qualify right now. We’re not sure how many wins we’ll need but we’ll take it one at a time, starting with Leicestershire.”
The rivalry between the Outlaws and the Foxes has been intense over the years and the near-neighbours had the better of the rain-affected match at Trent Bridge last month.
“They turned us over at our place, which was really disappointing for us,” reflected Moores. “It was the one game where I don’t think we’ve played well.
“In some other games where we have been beaten we’ve felt that the other side has played really well but we were poor that day.
“We’re looking forward to Friday, we’ll prepare well, pitch up there and be ready to go.”
Whilst Notts have struggled in the longer format of the game, they remain one of the strongest short-form sides.
“That format of the game is one that suits a lot of our players and one that we think we’ve got a real chance in,” Moores said.
“We’ve got some very exciting cricketers, that’s for sure. People like Alex Hales, Dan Christian, Ben Duckett and others can be very exciting to watch but we’ve also seen bowlers dominate a little bit more this year than at other times.
“We’ve said all along we want to keep getting better as a side, that’s what you need to do to win a competition.
“By the time you get to the knockout stages you’ve got to be in the sort of shape where you pitch up and you’ve got your own house in order.
“You know your roles, you know how you’re playing and you’re ready to compete.”
Notts will be without Imad Wasim for the matches against Leicestershire Foxes and Yorkshire Vikings but the Pakistan international will return to Trent Bridge for the final two group matches and any potential knockout games.
(Notts Outlaws face Leicestershire Vikings at The Fischer County Ground on Friday evening (23 August 2019), before hosting Yorkshire Vikings at Trent Bridge on Sunday (25 August 2019).