Giles orders repeat dose
Ashley Giles had a different role the last time Warwickshire tasted glory at Lord's but he hopes the outcome will be the same when his side take on Somerset in the Clydesdale Bank 40 final.
Eight years ago the left-arm spinner took 1-28 from 10 miserly overs as Warwickshire beat Essex by five wickets to lift the Benson & Hedges Cup.
Now director of cricket, Giles will watch from the Lord's dressing room as his charges attempt to emulate his feat by winning at the home of cricket.
“The last time we won at Lord’s was 2002 [the final Benson and Hedges Cup]," he said.
“We’re a good side, a big club. We seem to have had sticking points at quarter-finals in the last few years. But we’re now into the back end, and actually, from the buzz I get from everyone, it’s just pure excitement, not nerves.
“We were really looking forward to Scarborough, now we’ve got Lord’s, where we’re going to have a day in the sun, hopefully.
“It’s a fantastic achievement being here, considering where we’ve come from. If we can win it, it’d be out of this world.”
A young Ian Bell was man of the match when Warwickshire won that Lord's final almost a decade ago and Giles is looking to him and Jonathan Trott for big things.
“It’s not just their performance in itself,” Giles said.
“It’s what they can do for everyone else around them – their high quality takes more pressure off those guys who play around them, which makes their jobs easier.
"It’s great to have them available – it’ll give us pretty much a full strength side."
Warwickshire have endured a topsy-turvy season. In the LV= County Championship they needed a last day win over Hampshire to escape the relegation trapdoor. However, in one-day cricket they have been a different proposition in both 20 and 40-over formats.
“In one-day cricket we’ve done really well," said Giles. "Nationally we were the best team in the FP t20 group stages. Championship cricket has been really tough.
"What I’ve said in the last couple of years is that it’s always important that we run through the line, not just crawl over it.”
The above extract was taken from the CB40 Final programme. You can order a copy online.