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Root relishing another epic Roses clash

— 20 July 2018

Joe Root has urged his Yorkshire team-mates to try and be the match-winner in tonight’s Vitality Blast Roses clash with leaders Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford.

The England star is one of a host of returning internationals on both sides, although the majority of them will be Vikings.

A near 23,500 crowd is expected to watch county cricket’s biggest rivalry, which will also be televised, with Root admitting: “On paper, if you’re going to the game, you’re going to be in for a treat.

“You look at some of the names in the Lancashire side as well, guys like Jos Buttler, it’s going to make for a great spectacle.

“Fingers crossed, that can materialise on the field and become a reality. But as soon as you get out there as a player, names are irrelevant.

“It’s all about the performances you put in.

“It’s about relishing that challenge and the big occasion and trying to be the guy that makes the difference.

“Hopefully there’s a few fellas on our side hungry to step up to the plate and do just that.”

  • All the focus has been on the England players made available for this and Sunday’s Specsavers County Championship match between the two sides.

    And Kane Williamson’s return to Yorkshire colours has flown under the radar somewhat. Not with Root, however.

    “Kane’s going to be a massive part of this team for the rest of the summer,” said the England Test captain.

    “You’ve seen the influence he had on the IPL, he had a fantastic tournament.

    “He’s one of the best players in the world across all three formats. He’s going to bring a hell of a lot. He has done on previous occasions when he’s played for us – not just on the field but off it as well.

    “His demeanour, his character, his experience. He has a great way with the guys in the dressing room.”

  • Root heads into this evening having found form during the last week, scoring back-to-back ODI centuries for England against India, including one in the series deciding win at Emerald Headingley on Tuesday.

    “I’m looking forward to it,” he said, hoping to enhance Yorkshire’s good start of three wins from their first four North Group games.

    “Being involved in any Roses game is something you want to be a part of.

    “To get the opportunity to play at Old Trafford again in probably the biggest domestic fixture in T20 format for Yorkshire is really exciting. It should be great.

    “It’s been a good start. There’s been some strong performances, and we’ve won the majority of our games.

    “When you get involved in a Twenty20 tournament, that momentum can be quite crucial. It’s really important we carry that forward, and we relish this challenge of going to Old Trafford and trying to get another win.

    “There’s been some wonderful fixtures in the past where you’ve seen some great finishes and some really big performances individually.

    “Hopefully that can be the case this time and we can come out on top.

    “I’m really looking forward to it on a personal front. We follow that up with the four-day game on Sunday, and that should be another fantastic fixture.”

    Lancashire have won four of their first five North Group games, including four in a row.

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