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Notts take ‘mini series’ but aim to keep pushing

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It’s a long time before any prizes are handed out in this domestic county cricket season but Nottinghamshire’s captain and head coach already believe they’re ahead of the game with three early victories and top spot in the First Division table.

Beginning the season with a block of five consecutive matches in the Specsavers County Championship, the duo decided to set the team a challenge.

“We have set small targets,” revealed Steven Mullaney, the new skipper charged with leading the side after the retirement of Chris Read. “We’ve broken the season down and looked at these first five matches as a mini-series. We’re currently three-one up, with one to play – but now we have to push to try and make it four-one.”

Peter Moores also confirmed that there would be no relaxing.

“Yes, we’ve won this series, which was our first goal,” he said. “It’s nice to package things up in little ways but we’re now targeting the next match and that’s at home, which is important.

“But we’ll have to play well because Lancashire have steadily got better. They seem like they have really got going now.”

Notts got the better of the Red Rose county when the two sides met at Old Trafford in early April. The final morning delivered an extraordinary passage of play when a total of 12 wickets fell during an astonishing period where only 25 runs were scored.

In the final round of red ball matches, before the one-day competition starts, the battle between England’s premier pair of fast bowlers may well be pivotal to the outcome, with Nottinghamshire’s Stuart Broad again being made available for the tussle against Anderson and co.