Andrew Gale has already watched Yorkshire win a Lord’s final from the stands, now he wants to lift a trophy aloft himself at the Home of Cricket.
The Vikings skipper was an England under 19 when Richard Blakey lifted the C&G Trophy in August 2002 when Australian Matthew Elliott’s unbeaten century saw off Somerset by six wickets.
That was actually Yorkshire’s last trophy of any kind, and it is a statistic that Gale is itching to rectify as we prepare to start the third competition on the county schedule, the Royal London one-day Cup.
The competition will be played over 50 overs, the first time that has happened in county cricket since 2009. The last four seasons have seen counties play 40-over cricket.
Yorkshire kick off their group campaign against arch rivals Lancashire Lightning under lights at Emirates Old Trafford tomorrow (2pm), the first of eight group matches before the quarter-final, the semi-finals and the final at Lord’s on the last Saturday of the season (September 20).
“I was with the England under 19s at the time,” recalled Gale.
“There was me, Tim Bresnan and Nick Thornicroft who’d played a game at Taunton against India the day before. We drove straight to Lord’s to watch the final, and it was a fantastic day.
“It’s one of those things in your career that you put on your bucket list as a cricketer. You want to play in a Lord’s final. It’s something that I would definitely like to tick off.
“People say ‘it’s gone back to 50 overs and there won’t be as much interest and because of the amount of cricket played so far, teams will be chopping and changing’.
“I can assure you, we want to win it. We’ll be going into that trophy to win it.
“I loved 40-over cricket, I really enjoyed that format. But, while international cricket’s played at 50 overs, it makes sense for us to be playing that.
“I think it will definitely suit our style of cricket better, 50 overs.
“You’re almost playing a Championship match within 50 overs, although I’m sure some of the southern teams will try and play a more Twenty20 style.
“Someone like Adam Lyth could do a job playing like he does in Championship cricket, and with the seam attack we’ve got and two new balls, if we get the pitches doing a bit at Headingley like they do in the Championship, that could be a winning formula.”
The Vikings have named a strong squad. Ryan Sidebottom is rested and Yorkshire continue with investing in youth with the selection of 16-year-old bowler Matthew Fisher.
Bairstow+, Bresnan, Brooks, Gale*, Fisher, Leaning, Lees, Lyth, Patterson, Pyrah, Rashid, Wiliamson.
The match is live on Sky Sports with a 2pm start.