Will Rhodes believes India internationals Mohammed Siraj and Jayant Yadav will bring an exciting new dimension to Warwickshire's squad for the crucial final three weeks of the LV= Insurance County Championship season,
The Bears head into the last three games in serious danger of following their glorious title triumph with the ignominy of relegation. They almost certainly need to win at least two of their last three games – at home to Somerset starting next Monday then away to Gloucestershire and at home to Hampshire.
With their bowling resources hammered by injury – spearheads Olly Stone, Chris Woakes and Liam Norwell are ruled out of the run in – the Bears have signed paceman Siraj and spin-bowling all-rounder Nadav, who bring experience and quality from a combined 36 games for India across the formats.
The pair arrive recommended by Krunal Pandya, who played for the Bears recently in the Royal London Cup, and represent a welcome fleshing out of the bowling ranks for captain Rhodes who has at times found himself very short of options this season.
“The two guys will bring us a lot of qualities in different ways,” said the skipper. “Siraj will excite people with his pace and Yadav brings a great package to us with bat and ball so it’s great to have them on board. Krunal Pandya speaks highly of both of them and we trust his judgment but anyway their records speak for themselves.
“The two guys know they are coming in at what is a very important time for this club. Everyone understands the position we are in. The task is pretty simple – we have got to go out there and win games of cricket.”
Warwickshire need to emulate their storming finish of last season with a slightly different incentive. In 2021, the thrilling late impetus secured the title. In 2022, the target is much more modest – First Division survival.
“In a way it’s a very similar position to the one we were in just summer – we just need to win games,” Rhodes said. “So we have been here before in terms of being under pressure at the end of the season. Hopefully we can repeat the form of late last year.
“The little break we have just had in the schedule will definitely have helped. It’s been a long and tiring summer. Some of the lads have played in the second team this week, either to regain form or just to play some red ball cricket, and come next week people will be recharged and ready for this vital period.”