New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming joined up with Yorkshire yesterday and said that the most important thing he could do to help the beleaguered county get out of their rut was to score lots of runs.

However, his pledge did not come to immediate fruition as he was out in the opening over on his debut for the Tykes' in their inaugural Twenty20 Trophy tie against Derbyshire at Headingley today.

Opening with Matthew Wood, Fleming was out for a duck after he was trapped leg before by ex-England man Dominic Cork.

However, Fleming is of ample stock and character to put that setback behind him and he did have the excuse of jet-lag after only arriving at Headingley yesterday afternoon from the other side of the world.

At his arrival the 30-year-old left-hander declared: "I will be able to add something to the dressing room with my experience but first and foremost I want to make runs.

"Just how successful I am in other ways cannot be measured until the end of my time here."

Fleming said he believed Yorkshire had been hamstrung this season through losing so many players either through injury or England call-ups and it had put pressure on their resources.

"It has exposed younger players sooner than may otherwise have been expected but I still think that Yorkshire have a strong squad to choose from," he added.

Fleming said that after becoming frustrated by poor form about 18 months ago he had changed some aspects of his technique and this had led to him scoring more runs.

"Now that I have joined Yorkshire I have the opportunity to cement some of those changes and I hope that they will help to keep the runs flowing."

Unfortunately for Yorkshire, Fleming has to return home at the beginning of September to prepare for New Zealand's tour of India later that month and this means he will miss the last three Championship matches.

That leaves him with seven Championship games in which to turn round Yorkshire's flagging fortunes and guide them into one of the three promotion places.

Fleming comes to Yorkshire having played in 75 Test matches, scoring over 4,600 runs and hitting five centuries and 34 half-centuries. He has figured in 202 one-day internationals, making 5,523 runs with four centuries and 34 half-centuries while in all first class games he has rapped out 9,947 runs at an average of 42 with 20 centuries and 61 half-centuries.

Yorkshire chose a squad of 13 for today's match and also for Monday's game against Leicestershire at Grace Road (5.30pm).

Yorkshire from: Wood, Lumb, Yuvraj Singh, White, Craven, Hamilton, Fleming, Blakey, Bresnan, Gray, Sidebottom, Silverwood, Swanepoel.

- Yorkshire's one-day game against Lancashire, which was to have opened the Scarborough Cricket Festival on Sunday, August 10, has been called off because of Lancashire's involvement in the semi-finals of the Cheltenham and Gloucester Trophy.

Updated: 12:01 Saturday, June 14, 2003