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Iain Wardlaw reckons Yorkshire will be targeted after CLt20 experience
Iain Wardlaw believes Yorkshire’s recent performances in the Champions League t20 competition means they will automatically be seen as one of the teams to beat in next season’s domestic Twenty20.
The county may have lost three of their four group matches in South Africa, but there were a number of positives displayed with a depleted squad to encourage ahead of 2013, especially when you consider who was missing from the tour.
Jonny Bairstow, Tim Bresnan, Rich Pyrah and David Miller were unavailable for all or large parts of the CLt20, while a number of other players suffered injuries along the way.
Their third group match against Highveld Lions, which was their best performance of the main draw, came with a side including four players who did not play a Twenty20 match in England during 2012.
Wardlaw was one, alongside wicketkeeper Dan Hodgson, Oliver Hannon-Dalby and Steve Patterson.
“For us, we’ve been the underdogs all the way through the Champions League,” said the 27-year-old fast bowler, who watched from the sidelines as the county won qualifying matches against UVA Next and Trinidad and Tobago in exhilarating fashion.
“When we go back home, we’re going to be expected to win most games. It will leave us in a different scenario, but we’ve got enough in our squad to easily do well next year.
“This has been a real eye-opener. It’s showed us exactly where we need to be to play with the big boys. And, to be honest, I don’t think we’re that far away. Taking this experience into domestic cricket, particularly our one-day stuff, is going to be invaluable.”
Wardlaw took three wickets in his two matches against the Lions and Chennai Super Kings, including the notable scalp of India captain MS Dhoni against the latter.
And he insists the experience of playing on a global stage will drive him on to improve this winter.
“I want to play in every game for Yorkshire,” he added. “There’s development work to be done during the winter, but I feel like I’m in a good position, certainly better than I was last year.
“Hopefully I can get some performances in during the pre-season tour to set me up for the competitive games.
“From where I was last year, to end this having got promoted and played in South Africa, it’s been a fantastic year. I’m desperate to push on now.”
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