YORKSHIRE’S players are being challenged to use their heads more when the pressure is on.
The club’s coaches want them to make better decisions in matches at critical times.
By and large our execution in bowling has been pretty good, but I think we can improve our fielding. We’ve made probably too many errors in the field, more than we’d like.Martyn Moxon
The call comes ahead of today’s Royal London Cup game against Derbyshire at Headingley.
Yorkshire thrashed Leicestershire in their opening match, but have since tied with Warwickshire and lost to Lancashire.
They lie sixth in the nine-team North Group with each team playing eight fixtures and the top three reaching the knockout stages.
“We’ve been good in patches,” said director of cricket Martyn Moxon. “We had a pretty strong game against Leicestershire all round.
“In the other two games there’s been areas that we could have been better in, whether that be the fielding, bowling or batting. We’ve just not quite been consistent enough to win both games.
“Over 100 overs there’s lots of things happen that you think, ‘oh, if only there hadn’t been a misfield here or an overthrow there’, and we maybe could have made better decisions once we’d almost kind of got to the point where we’d won both games batting second. We could have made better decisions once we’d done the hard work as it were.
“The way we try and work is that it’s all about the thinking. We can stand it if the execution isn’t quite right so long as the thinking’s right. We can live with that. But if you’ve got seven off the over already, say, and it’s the last ball do you need to try and hit a six? Probably not. It’s trying to manage the what-do-I-need-to-do-at-this-moment-in-time situation.
“Clear thinking under pressure is something we talk about and sometimes we don’t quite get that right. We could be better at managing risk a little bit better.”
David Willey makes his last appearance for the club today before linking up with England at their World Cup training camp.
Adil Rashid is unavailable as it was agreed with England that he would only play in three of the first four games; he has been ever-present until now.
Yorkshire do not expect to see their England players again in the tournament due to the impending international summer.
Moxon believes that the North Group is anybody’s at this stage with the two group winners going straight through to a home semi-final and the team finishing second in each group gaining a home draw in the quarter-final play-offs against the team finishing third in the opposite group.
The quarter-final play-off winners are therefore away in the semi-finals, but those semi-finals are determined by a draw.
“It’s wide open,” said Moxon. “The next couple of games will really shape the group. When everybody’s played four or five games, that’s when I think you really get an idea of where you’re at. I think that every team is capable of beating each other.
“Derbyshire are certainly a very good side. There are no easy games. You can’t afford too many mistakes during the 100 overs and although you’re never really going to play the perfect game, you’ve got to keep your mistakes down to a minimum.
“Batting in one-day cricket is a fine line between being positive and reckless. When you go for the big shot if it goes for six you’re a hero, if you get caught on the edge you’re a villain.
“I think by and large our execution in bowling has been pretty good, but I think we can improve our fielding. We’ve made probably too many errors in the field, more than we’d like. At Edgbaston we probably conceded about 20 runs more than we could have done.
“Although we were better on Sunday we still made a few errors that you’d think we wouldn’t make, which maybe adds up to another 10 runs or so. It costs you in the end if you’re not careful.”
Derbyshire are fourth in the table after two victories and a defeat. They beat Northamptonshire in their opening match before losing to Nottinghamshire and defeating Leicestershire.
Yorkshire have a better one-day record against Derbyshire than against any other county, with a win ratio of 69 per cent. They have won their last four one-day meetings.
Yorkshire’s squad shows two changes from the Lancashire defeat with Rashid dropping out along with pace man Jared Warner. Pace bowler Ben Coad and all-rounder Matthew Waite return, with Steve Patterson set to resume the captaincy after resting against Lancashire.
Yorkshire (from): Ballance, Bresnan, Brook, Coad, Kohler-Cadmore, Leaning, Lyth, Olivier, Patterson (capt), Pillans, Poysden, Tattersall, Waite, Willey.