Rawlins hoping to be a match-winner
Delray Rawlins is confident Sussex can produce another strong run in the Vitality Blast this season.
Coach Jason Gillespie’s outfit have thrived in the Twenty20 competition in recent years and are again expected to be among the main contenders this campaign.
“We are looking strong again this year,” Rawlins told The Royal Gazette. “With David Wiese allowed to travel from South Africa and adding Ravi Bopara to the squad, we have all bases covered.”
Wiese was one of Sussex’s most prolific batsmen in last year’s tournament having amassed 284 runs at a strike rate of 149.47, while Bopara helped guide Essex to an upset over Worcestershire in the final.
Sussex have progressed beyond the group stage of the competition for the past two seasons, having reached the final in 2018 and the quarter-finals last year after clinching group honours, where they came up short against Worcestershire Rapids on each occasion. Sussex will be keen to launch their campaign on the front foot when they host Surrey in their Vitality Blast group opener at 1st Central County Ground in Hove tomorrow.
“Obviously T20 is an exciting time for the lads,” Rawlins added. “I’m just looking forward to be back playing white-ball cricket again and hopefully putting in some match-winning performances.”
The 22-year-old’s aggressive batting is well suited to the T20 format and he is going into tomorrow’s match with some momentum having produced impressive knocks of 46 and 33 in Sussex’s recent five-wicket defeat against Middlesex at Radlett in the Bob Willis Trophy.
“I’m starting to feel better with the bat,” Rawlins said. “It’s nice to get some rhythm back and get a few runs. Obviously I would have liked more, but I’m doing the hard part which is getting a start, so now it’s just a case of going on and converting.”
Sussex suffered their third-straight defeat in the Bob Willis Trophy against Middlesex after squandering a first-innings lead.
“We found ourselves in a good position on day two but we just couldn’t capitalise on that with the bat, which meant we were short quite a few and the chase was easier,” Rawlins added.
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