Andrew Gale is expecting plenty of tough selection decisions ahead of next month’s opening Specsavers County Championship clash with champions Essex at Emerald Headingley.
Coach Gale, speaking from the White Rose’s pre-season tour in South Africa, says competition for places is already intense, and his players haven’t even donned their whites yet.
That comes on Monday and Tuesday when they face Nottinghamshire in a two-day friendly in Potchefstroom.
“Pre-season is about everyone putting their name in the hat and getting some form and confidence in themselves,” said the former captain.
“The lads have worked really this winter, so it’s about putting that out into the middle and getting runs and wickets on the board.
“I can’t remember a time when there’s ever been more competition for places at the club. The lads know that and can feel it, and they’re desperate to do well.
“You want the bowlers to be ready and have enough overs in the tank, you want the batsmen to spend a bit of time at the crease.
“What the team will look like (for the first game), there’s lots of questions to be answered. And only the lads can answer them. Come the first game of the season against Essex, we want everyone in a good place mentally and physically. This is the start of it.”
Watch our video from Day 1 in Potchefstroom, South Africa.
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Gale will have overseen three days of training outdoors in Potch ahead of the first match action.
“We’re in a good place at the minute,” he said.
“Everyone has worked hard indoors, and this gives us the chance to get everyone together and work on our game plans, put some of the practice we’ve done indoors into outdoor practice and game situations.
“We’re easing in. We will have had three days of practice before our first game. By then, the lads will be at full tilt.”