STEVE Patterson insists Yorkshire’s current squad has genuine title potential - and he would love to help his current team-mates gain a snapshot of what it was like to win back-to-back County Championship titles in 2014 and 2015.

The county’s captain leads his side into an exciting final month of the season this Bank Holiday weekend.

Their clash with Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl, starting Monday (11am), is the first of the competition’s final group stage.

Yorkshire are amongst the top six teams pursuing the Championship title and the Bob Willis Trophy.

Each team plays four games, with the top team at the end of next month crowned the county champions. The top two teams will then play off for the Bob Willis Trophy in a five-day final at Lord’s.

Yorkshire will start bottom of the six-team group on 4.5 points as teams carry through half the points they accrued in initial group phase games against the team they qualified with from Group Three. That is Lancashire, who they don’t play again.

Warwickshire are top of the table on 21 points, Somerset second on 18.5, Lancashire third on 16.5, Hampshire fourth with 8.5, and Notts fifth with five. Then come Yorkshire.

The White Rose clearly have work to do in games against Hampshire, Somerset at Scarborough, Warwickshire at Emerald Headingley and Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge. But the skipper sees no reason why something special can’t be achieved.

“We have such a good bunch of lads in the dressing room,” said Patterson.

“For the first time under my captaincy, I feel like we’ve got a squad capable of really competing for trophies. That’s what we all play for - to win.

“Seeing other lads I played with in that team (2014 and 2015), whether they be in or out of the game now, it was almost the highlight of our careers. It was a brilliant time winning back-to-back Championships.

“We were the best team in the country, and it was an amazing feeling.

“And I’d like these lads, because I know their ability and personalities, to achieve what we did.

“If I can help them towards doing that, it would be fantastic.

“I’d certainly like to try to win something else before I finish playing.”

Despite starting bottom of the group, Yorkshire head into the final phase having won five of their 10 matches - more than anyone else in country.

Patterson and co will be without England players Jonny Bairstow, Dawid Malan and Joe Root due to Test duty, but Dom Bess will be available.

Patterson said: “To say we’re still having those struggles of losing players - the Championship team can change by three, four or five lads at a time - and to have picked up enough results to be where we are, I think it’s been a real achievement.

“We haven’t played anywhere near our best cricket in the Championship, not getting enough runs regularly, but we’ve found a way to win games.

“What comes in the next month, who knows.

“But we’ve certainly given ourselves a chance, and that’s all we can ask.

“We’ve got a big squad and will have a lot of lads fresh come September. So there’s no reason why we can’t give it a good crack.”

Hampshire won four of their 10 games in Group Two.

Captained by James Vince, they have former South Africa fast bowler Kyle Abbott as their overseas player. He is the third leading wicket-taker across the Championship this season with 43.

Yorkshire won by an innings and 44 runs on their last visit to the Ageas Bowl in April 2019, with Gary Ballance making 148 and Patterson claiming six wickets in the match.