Comeback king Jordan Thompson has learned to take rough with smooth at Yorkshire CCC

JORDAN THOMPSON admitted that a less experienced version of himself might not have bounced back so strongly from conceding 30 runs in an over to turn in a match-winning performance less than 48 hours later.

The Yorkshire all-rounder took 3-18 at Northants on Sunday - including his 100th wicket in T20 - as the visitors won by 29 runs.

It was in some contrast to the events at Leicester on Friday night when Thompson was struck for three sixes and two fours by Sol Budinger as Yorkshire lost by seven wickets with 35 balls remaining.

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“Friday night was a bit of a disappointment to say the least,” said Thompson. “It was a disappointment to bowl like that when I’ve played so much T20 cricket.

Sign here, please. Jordan Thompson obliges young supporters after Yorkshire's opening night win over Worcestershire in the Vitality Blast. Picture by Alex Whitehead/SWpix.comSign here, please. Jordan Thompson obliges young supporters after Yorkshire's opening night win over Worcestershire in the Vitality Blast. Picture by Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com
Sign here, please. Jordan Thompson obliges young supporters after Yorkshire's opening night win over Worcestershire in the Vitality Blast. Picture by Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com

“At the same time, I’m big enough and ugly enough to know that I can turn it around in a couple of days and put in a match-winning performance.

“It’s an experience thing - if it had been three or four years ago, I might have been a bit harder on myself, but knowing that I had a game two days later to put it right was good and, thankfully, we got the result.”

Thompson, 27, reached the 100-wicket milestone with his second wicket at Wantage Road - Sikandar Raza, the Zimbabwe all-rounder, caught at long-off by Joe Root.

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It was Root, said Thompson, who had reminded him of the many good moments in his T20 career in the immediate aftermath of the Leicester experience.

100 up! It's a century of T20 wickets now for Jordan Thompson, the dynamic Yorkshire all-rounder. Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com100 up! It's a century of T20 wickets now for Jordan Thompson, the dynamic Yorkshire all-rounder. Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com
100 up! It's a century of T20 wickets now for Jordan Thompson, the dynamic Yorkshire all-rounder. Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com

“I did feel a little bit down on Friday but you get used to it in T20,” added Thompson. “We tried to have a bit of a laugh about it afterwards.

“‘Rooty’ actually said to me, ‘Look at those nights like the Oval, the quarter-final (against Surrey in 2022, when Thompson won the match with a brilliant final over).’

“You’ve got to take the highs and the lows and it’s important that you don’t get too high or too low.”

Of his 100-wicket achievement, Thompson is thrilled.

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His record now stands at 101 wickets from 102 games at an average of 25 with an economy rate of nine, the so-called “man who makes things happen” having done exactly that at many important times.

Thompson – as whole-hearted a cricketer as Yorkshire have produced – has taken 74 of those wickets for the county, eight for the Hobart Hurricanes, one apiece for Karachi Kings and MI Emirates, plus 17 in The Hundred for London Spirit, with wickets in the 100-ball competition officially classed among the T20 statistics.

He is the fifth-highest T20 wicket-taker in Yorkshire’s history behind Adil Rashid (122), Tim Bresnan (118), Rich Pyrah (108) and Azeem Rafiq (102), with the next-highest current player being Matty Fisher with 45.

“It’s a nice milestone to get to 100,” said Thompson, who made his debut in 2018. “It was my 100th game a couple of games ago (against Worcestershire) and I’m one wicket behind my overall games at the moment, so it would be nice to align that.

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“When you come into T20 you’re naive, but four or five years of playing T20 cricket now I’ve learned to adapt to playing in different countries and in different conditions. Hopefully there’s many more wickets to come.”

Thompson’s impact at Wantage Road was not simply confined to the ball.

Earlier, he struck 20 in the final over of the innings bowled by David Willey, his former Yorkshire team-mate, which included a four and a couple of handsome straight sixes.

Later, he pulled off a quite magnificent diving catch running in from deep square-leg to dismiss the dangerous Ravi Bopara off Dan Moriarty, displaying terrific athleticism.

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Bopara, the evergreen former England all-rounder, was just beginning to threaten an improbable heist when his dismissal left Northants 124-6 in the 16th over chasing 187 and effectively sealed the match from Yorkshire’s perspective.

“I enjoyed that one (the Bopara catch),” said Thompson. “I managed to just get there and it was at an important point in the game.

“I’ve played with ‘Rav’ quite a lot; I know what he can do. He’s a very dangerous cricketer, even at the ripe old age of 39.

“He’s still batting very well and his bowling is very tricky, so it was nice to get rid of him and then to close the game up.”

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After winning their opening Blast match against Worcestershire at Headingley, Yorkshire have proved – the Leicester defeat notwithstanding – that they can be a force to be reckoned with when everything clicks. Next up is Derbyshire at Headingley on Sunday.

“T20 can be hard,” added Thompson. “Hopefully we can go on a run of a few wins now.

“Obviously, there’s going to be times when you get beat and you get beat well, so it’s a matter of putting those games behind you and moving forward.

“T20 tos-and-fros but the boys are chipping in all the way through and we’ve got the experience to go well in this comp.”

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