Chris Rushworth eager for chance to shine as Durham take on Leicestershire

Durham paceman Chris Rushworth. Picture by Stu Norton
Durham paceman Chris Rushworth. Picture by Stu Norton
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Chris Rushworth was desperate to get back out in the middle against Leicestershire after a frustrating start to Durham’s Specsavers County Championship Division Two campaign.

They were hammered in their opening match of the season, losing by nine wickets to Kent inside two days at the Emirates Riverside.

And Durham were then denied the opportunity to bounce back as their clash with Northamptonshire was washed out completely without a ball being bowled at Wantage Road.

Rushworth and his team-mates were also hampered by the weather in the build-up to the campaign, which has been exacerbated by their lack of game time to start the new term.

The Wearside paceman said: “It was very frustrating. When you get beat as badly as we did against Kent, you want to rectify it as quickly as possible.

“We were meant to be playing a Northants side that were struggling, so we felt as though as we had a good chance to get a positive result.

“Going down there and never looking like bowling a ball was hard work and very frustrating.

“It’s a long four days when you’re in a small town like Northampton.

“You want to bowl and get into a rhythm as quickly as possible. When you start bowling, you want to keep your overs up and your workload high – you get through it a lot better. When you’re stopping and starting, you never feel in a rhythm.

“As a bowler you want to feel comfortable and that four days of not being able to bowl and getting through things is frustrating.”

Durham currently sit bottom of Division Two after their opening two matches. Today’s opponents Leicestershire – it is the first day of the Championship clash in Chester-le-Street – are also winless, having drawn against Sussex and Derbyshire in their two contests.

Rushworth has insisted that Durham cannot place further pressure on themselves to climb the table to get back into contention, especially against an experienced outfit.

“The guys really want to do well and win matches”, he added. “However, we cannot put too much pressure on ourselves to do something remarkable. It’s still a long season ahead. We’ve just to try and improve from the Kent game, which to be honest does not take an awful lot.

“Guys are desperate to try and spend time in the middle and score runs, equally with the ball we’re aiming to try and take wickets as quickly as possible.

“It will be a tough game. They’ve recruited well over the winter. Varun Aaron’s been brought into their bowling attack which has no doubt strengthened them. They’ve got a lot of new personnel and a lot of experienced players.”

“When you’ve got a top order like they have, early wickets will be crucial as it is in most games.

“You can’t win games of cricket when you score 90 runs in the first innings.

“The lads are keen and hungry to put things right. It’s going to be a challenge, but, in home conditions, I fancy us to get over the line.”