ANDREW HODD ditched the trowel to pick up his bat with devastating effect as he helped Yorkshire Vikings end their losing streak in the NatWest T20 Blast at Headingley last night.
Wicketkeeper Hodd came into the side to face Nottinghamshire Outlaws as a last-minute replacement for Jonny Bairstow, who had been called up by England as cover for Jos Buttler for today’s deciding ODI against New Zealand at Durham.
And while it was Australian Glenn Maxwell who stole most of the headlines when scoring a blistering 92 not out, Hodd made an equally significant contribution at the other end, smashing 70 off 52 balls as Yorkshire posted 209-4, eventually winning by 40 runs to end a three-game losing streak in the competition.
But it wasn’t until the morning of the match that Hodd discovered he was needed, answering Yorkshire’s SOS in style with six fours and five sixes.
“I was plastering a wall at home this morning doing a bit of DIY when I got the call to come straight to Headingley to replace Jonny who had been called up by England, but I had to clean my kit up a bit first,” said Hodd.
“I had been really disappointed not to score too many runs in the couple of games in which I played at the start of the tournament but I probably put too much pressure on myself and it was nice to get the call a late call and another chance.
“It is the nature of the beast of Twenty 20 cricket that some days it doesn’t happen for you and some days it does and (on this occasion) I was flying and was able to give it a good whack.”
Hodd said he was confident team-mate Maxwell would come good in the T20 format for the Vikings, having batted alongside him during a 2nd XI team match earlier in the week, the Australian scoring an impressive 93.
“It was great batting with Glenn,” added Hodd. “He is an absolute legend and just watching him from the other end was a delight.
“We were playing together for the Second XI at Scarborough earlier this week when he really hit form with a splendid 93 which helped us to win the match.”
Maxwell, who also picked up two wickets and held two catches, said he believed Yorkshire were now finding their form in the 20-over format after a recent slump.
“I think the way we played in all three facets (against Nottinghamshire) shows we’re getting a real good grip on our T20,” he said.
“It’s all about momentum so if we can take that into (the next game) that would be ideal. We’ll back ourselves to do well.
“Hopefully we can create a Vikings juggernaut and stampede into the finals.”
Yorkshire continue their North Group campaign by travelling to Edgbaston to face the Birmingham Bears on Sunday.