Jack Brooks is confident Yorkshire are peaking at the business end of this summer’s Vitality Blast.
The Vikings seamer has enjoyed a productive return to T20 colours after a frustrating three years on the sidelines for a variety of reasons, not least managing workloads.
Brooks has taken seven wickets in six Blast appearances this summer, including hauls of 3-21 and 3-23 in home victories over Durham and Leicestershire.
Yorkshire currently sit third inside the top four quarter-final qualifying places on 12 points with six wins from 10 North Group outings.
They head into the first of four remaining games against Roses rivals Lancashire at Emerald Headingley tomorrow (7pm) with back-to-back home wins against Leicestershire and Northamptonshire under their belts last week.
The 34-year-old said: “We’ve just got to keep winning. We’re on a bit of a roll now, and we have a big Roses game coming up.
“After a couple disappointing games against Derbyshire, which were the sort of performances we don’t want, we raised the levels and showed what we’re capable of.
“It’s nice to finish the group on a winning run and not peak too soon. Look at Birmingham. They got off to a flyer and are second bottom now.
“But you also need a few disappointing performances to make you realise where you need to be. We’ve had that little lull, and now we’re playing some really good cricket, especially up front in both power plays.
“We seem to know our roles as individuals within that team, which is a massive thing.
“We also provide a lot of energy in the field, a lot of hustle. It looks like everyone is really enjoying it.
“We make a big point of making sure the energy’s up in the field.
“Early wickets are always massive.
“That’s my job, and luckily for most of the games I’ve played it’s come off. Dave Willey’s made a career out of doing that, and it puts opposition under the pump straightaway.”
Brooks continued: “With regards to my lack of T20 cricket, it was a little bit of a case of ‘What’s it going to be like having missed a couple of years?’ But I’ve kept my role very simple and practiced the skills I know I’ll use.
“It’s basically going out there and trying to bowl fast and straight, and it’s worked.
“I back my skills, and I know I’m good enough to be at that level.
“All I can do is take it game by game and keep taking wickets.
“We have such a good squad here. When Liam’s (Plunkett) fit again, it’s going to be difficult to leave him out. That’s up to the coaches, but I can only keep doing what I’m doing.”
Brooks has only played in two Roses T20 fixtures – a tie at Headingley in 2013 and a five-wicket win at Old Trafford in 2014 when Rich Pyrah hit the winning runs.
When Yorkshire lost by one run at Old Trafford last month, he was commentating for BBC Test Match Special.
“They are the best atmospheres and the ones you want to play in,” he added. “I’m really excited. It should be a great game again.”
Lancashire desperately need a win having lost three of their last four games, including against Durham last night when they failed to get just six off the last over chasing 155.