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Preview: Yorkshire Vikings vs Lancashire Lightning - T20

— 7 June 2022

Dominic Drakes is only with Yorkshire for a short time, but the early indications are that it will be a good time for the Bajan all-rounder and the county.

Five wickets in two Vitality Blast appearances with his left-arm seamers, the 24-year-old has contributed to home victories over Durham and Nottinghamshire.

In returning hauls of 2-43 and 3-31, the five-time West Indies international has ensured Yorkshire’s bid for quarter-final qualification from the North Group is back on track after defeats to Leicestershire and Derbyshire last week.

The son of former international all-rounder Vasbert, a close friend of Ottis Gibson’s, he will play in the Roses match against Lancashire at Headingley tomorrow (6.30pm) and then Birmingham Bears at Edgbaston on Friday.

Drakes is then available to play in Sunday’s County Championship game at Hampshire before returning home.

Yorkshire head into the clash with Lancashire, their seventh of 14 group games, with three wins, a tie and two defeats under their belts – inside the top four ahead of tonight’s round of games involving some rivals.

  • Having taken two wickets in two balls in his opening over to help reduce Notts to 14-3 in pursuit of 203 last night, Drakes got the 3,500 strong Headingley crowd up and about.

    If he can do similar to a high-flying Lightning side, who currently lead the North Group after six games, then he will become an instant hero to the Yorkshire faithful.

    “I heard there is going to be a big crowd in and the teams have a big rivalry with each other,” he smiled. “I’m looking forward to that one, for sure.

    “We are going well now. The chemistry in this team is fantastic, it’s easy to see that.

    “I would like to get the team four wins before I leave – that would be ideal.”

    Immediate impressions of Drakes are that he is a happy but gentle soul off the field. On it, he is a tall and nasty quick who troubles batters with extra pace and bounce.

    In forming a game-breaking new ball partnership with captain David Willey last night, he devastated Nottinghamshire’s chances of success with the wickets of Joe Clarke brilliantly caught behind down leg by Jonny Tattersall and Samit Patel bowled.

    No doubt a bittersweet moment for Dominic’s father, Vasbert, who played for Notts in 1999 as one of four counties; he also played for Leicestershire, Sussex and Warwickshire.

    “This time with Yorkshire a huge thing for my career,” continued Drakes junior. “My dad played county cricket, and all I’ve ever wanted to do is follow in his footsteps.

    “The weather is a bit cold, not what I’m accustomed to back at home. But I’m enjoying it.”

    Drakes arrived at Yorkshire on the back of an Indian Premier League campaign with champions Gujarat Titans in which he didn’t actually play a game.

    In fact, he has won the last two IPL titles, also with Chennai Super Kings, without playing in a single fixture.

    “You learn a lot on the bench, but match time is so much different,” said Drakes, whose last game prior to arriving at Headingley had been a T20 international in India in February.

    Talking about learning, Drakes has revealed how Vikings head coach Gibson has already adding a new dimension to his bowling, despite only being with Yorkshire for just over a week.

    “Ottis is a family friend. He lived 30 seconds away from my dad, and they were best friends,” he said.

    “I find him a fantastic coach. As soon as I came here, I had two sessions with him and he gave me two tips. Straightaway, wow! It was like my bowling had started all over again.”

    Asked what those tips were, he smiled and said: “I’ll keep those to myself.”

    After the next couple of T20s, Drakes could play in the Championship game against Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl from Sunday.

    Upon announcing his signing last Tuesday, interim managing director of cricket Darren Gough said: “His talent is clear to see, and I’m sure he has the skills required to forge a brilliant career in Test Match cricket.”

    And that is exactly what the man himself wants to do, adding: “I believe everything you do starts with the things that make you successful in first-class and Test cricket, your technique, concentration, that kind of thing.

    “That’s still the pinnacle for me.”

    Yorkshire and Lancashire played out a thrilling tie at Emirates Old Trafford last month when the Vikings fell agonisingly short of chasing 184.

    Since then, the Lightning have won four games on the spin to take top spot in the group, a place they will look to consolidate when they take on Leicestershire at Grace Road this evening before heading up the M1 to Headingley for a clash which will be televised live on Sky Sports.

    Squad

    David Willey ©, Finn Allen, Dom Bess, Harry Brook, Dominic Drakes, Will Fraine, George Hill, Dominic Leech, Will Luxton, Adam Lyth, Adil Rashid, Matthew Revis, Jack Shutt, Jonathan Tattersall, Jordan Thompson.

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