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Myburgh aiming to clear the ropes

By Jonathan Veal

Batsman Johann Myburgh is chasing the thrill of hitting boundaries as Somerset aim to kick-start their Natwest T20 Blast campaign against Hampshire tomorrow.

The south-west county, who are top of LV= County Championship Division One, have lost three of their opening four games in the round-robin stage of the 20-over competition and a boundary-fest at Taunton could help them build some momentum.

Myburgh, who has a highest T20 score of 88, insists there is no better feeling than putting bat on ball and believes playing in a positive manner will be crucial to turning their from around in the shortest format of the game.

“It’s always nice as a batsman to hit fours and sixes,” the 33-year-old told ecb.co.uk.

“It’s great hitting the middle, hearing the sound of the ball off the bat and seeing it fly over the rope.

“It’s very thrilling and supporters love it and that’s why the format is so exciting.

Somerset's Johann Myburgh, who has had spells with Durham and Hampshire, knows boundaries are in order in the Natwest T20 Blast

“Having looked at the games we have played so far, we just need to get into the game and try and grab the momentum and play positive cricket.

“That’s something we will try and do. Playing against Hampshire will be very tough, they are a very good white-ball cricket team and we will show them plenty of respect but that doesn’t mean we will be standing back.

“We will try and get the momentum up front and carry that on.”

The T20 game has moved on massively since its inception, with inventive batting strokes and power hitting seeing the average scores go through the roof.

Somerset skipper Marcus Trescothick recently predicted sides will soon be scoring 300 in an innings and, with fans packing out grounds around the country thirsty for fours and sixes, Myburgh admits there is pressure to deliver.

“T20 brings a lot of excitement, not only for the spectators but for the players. It’s a time where we can go out and express ourselves,” he added.

“There is pressure in all formats of the game, it is a different skill that is required in T20, whether that is hitting a boundary from the get-go or getting someone at the other end on strike.

“You have to use your experience and know what is important at the time. But strike-rates are important in T20 and a lot of the times little innings of 25 at a 200 strike-rate is worth a lot.

“So strike-rate does play a role but you still have to use your head a little bit and whatever the situation requires at the time then that’s what you need to do.”

With the format developing at the rate it has, batsmen have had to change their game in order to keep up. However, the South African has always had a penchant for hitting boundaries and he believes that stands him in good stead.

“I have always been an attacking players so in terms of adapting my game to T20, the change hasn’t been massive.

“You watch guys and try and work things into your game but everyone is different.

“But you know where your strengths are and where you hit the ball well, so it’s just about making sure those are in check and being decisive and expressing yourself.”

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