“Hampshire showed us the way in a lot of respects.” That was Shan Masood’s summary of today’s Metro Ban One-Day Cup defeat for Yorkshire against Hampshire at York.
The Vikings went down by 177 runs, bowled out for 134 in reply to Hampshire’s 311-6.
Masood made 18 in an innings which saw Dom Bess top-score with 24 and the county slip to 36-7 before a late recovery to add respectability.
This was a defeat which dented Yorkshire’s hopes of knockout qualification, them slipping from third at the start of the day to sixth after their second defeat in six games.
They are only one point away from third-placed Nottinghamshire with a game in hand. They hold the final qualifying berth. But with four teams still in the race for that position – Notts, Lancashire, Kent and Yorkshire – the Vikings will have to win their last two games to have any chance of qualifying.
Captain Masood and his team-mates will see this as an opportunity missed.
Hampshire were 108-4 in the 26th over batting first on a used pitch before Tom Prest’s superb 105 recovered them to a position of significant strength.
Masood said: “They took the innings deep. The ball nibbled around for us as well, but they made sure that they didn’t give wickets away.
“They had a decent base, which allowed them to get a very good score. They then bowled very well.
“As a team and looking at how to produce a result, I don’t think we had a decent enough plan against the new ball. We were not here nor there. It took us by surprise, but I thought our action plan wasn’t there in how to put their bowlers under pressure.
“When the ball is doing a bit, you can either go hard and put them under pressure, make them change bowlers and fields, but we didn’t really do that.
“Or you can play it like a four-day match and absorb pressure – keep wickets in hand and back yourself to have a go at the end.
“In the grand scheme of things, looking at the bigger picture, it’s a lesson to be learned. Like we’ve touched on, it’s a learning. Sometimes you have to learn cricket the hard way.
“Yes, results matter and we have to win both of our games to go through. But it’s a young team and you want them to learn.”
Yorkshire head to Group One leaders Leicestershire on Sunday before heading down to face Middlesex at Radlett on Tuesday.
Masood, meanwhile, has also been speaking about international selection.
In his post match media interview, he was asked about Harry Brook’s shock omission from England’s 15-man squad for the upcoming ODI series against New Zealand.
The England selectors have also admitted it is a squad they are likely to take forward to the World Cup in India this October.
However, Brook is not the only one disappointed by such news. Masood has also recently learnt of his omission from Pakistan’s squads for the forthcoming Asia Cup and Afghanistan series. Again, it now looks like he could miss the World Cup.
Of course, for both Brook and Masood, injuries could strike. So all is not lost just yet.
Masood added: “Selection is always tough, especially with World Cups. It’s a squad of 15.
“On a personal note, I’ve just received news of not being picked for the Asia Cup and the Afghanistan series.
“With Brooky, you never expect a top-class player to be dropped. But it’s how they fit the 15 in.
“Unfortunately, for now with the provisional squads, he’s not made it. But I see him going to India whether it’s as a travelling reserve or one of the 15.
“He’d be in my 15, but England have a world-class side.
“It’s been a few days now for me. It was just before the Essex game (Sunday).
“This has been my best format domestically, and I feel that I haven’t had much opportunity in ODI cricket.
“You have to accept these decisions. Luckily we’re still playing the same format here (as they do in the World Cup).
“I haven’t done justice to it in the last two games, but the opportunity is there. Score runs, win games for Yorkshire and anything can happen between now and October.”