Alex Lees column: Rogers knock blew us all away

5:50pm Monday 5th May 2014

By Alex Lees

The Middlesex match that finished at Lord’s last Wednesday was obviously very disappointing for us.

We thought we were in a good position after our second innings but we didn’t bowl as well we’d have liked on that third afternoon and evening.

Ultimately, you have to give credit to Chris Rogers for his 241 not out. He’s a quality international player and he came up with the goods for them.

I’m a bit biased, and I’ve seen the Yorkshire lads produce some great knocks – Gary Ballance’s hundred was a different type of innings – but Chris’s effort is certainly up there.

What was it, the third-highest run-chase in County Championship history? His knock was a special innings under pressure.

We went hard with the new ball on the third evening and hard again on the fourth morning and sometimes you have to hold your hand up and say ‘it was a special innings played against some not too good bowling on our part’.

But in cricket, you’re not going to win every game or every session. We just have to use our defeat at Lord’s as a learning experience and move forward.

For my part, I’ve only played one Championship match in April prior to this season and I’ve gone steadily.

A hundred would have been nice but it’s hard work. You have to play positively and give yourself a chance otherwise there will be a ball with your name on it coming along at some point.

You have to try and play the ball late and try to rotate the strike, run well and give the bowler the problem of having to bowl to a different batter.

I think you have to be prepared to bat for a long time in April and accept the fact that you are going to get some good balls, particularly if you open the innings.

In all three games I’ve had the opportunity to get some big scores. Apart from my 90 against Northants, I haven’t really kicked on.

I’m hoping to sort that out in the next month or two but overall I’m in a good place and hope the wickets will get a little bit better as we move into May.

As a team since the start of the season, we’ve played some very good cricket. In the Middlesex game we probably dominated proceedings up until that opening partnership on the third evening. That’s how cricket works sometimes.

So, as long as we can keep going in the right direction, I think we’ll be okay.


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