AARON FINCH says struggling to find a happy medium between attack and defence could be a reason why his first-class record is so thin.
Yorkshire’s new overseas signing, a replacement for Kane Williamson in the LV= County Championship, will make his fourday bow against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road tomorrow.
The Australian has become a limited overs superstar on the back of some fearless and fearsome strokeplay against the white ball, with his first appearance in a White Rose shirt coming in tonight’s NatWest T20 Blast meeting with Derbyshire at Headingley.
But Finch, 27, has so far struggled to adapt to the longer format.
He has not found a settled place in the batting order for his Aussie state side Victoria, who have even dropped him from their team in the past. He has only scored two hundreds in 39 first-class matches, at an average of just 27.47. Finch will bat in the middle order against a Northampton side Yorkshire have already beaten by an innings this season.
When asked for his opinion on why he has struggled so much against the red ball, he said: “It’s a little bit of technique.
“At times I’ve been caught between trying to play my natural game as an attacking player, whether it’s at the top of the order or at number five, or going the other way and being ultradefensive and trying to grind out an innings.
“That’s one thing I’ve wrestled with for quite a while, but I feel as though my game has changed for the better in that format, and I feel as though I’m in a position now where I can trust my game and back the plans that I have to be successful.
“There were small technique changes that I think I had to make that I’ve been working on, and it’s just a case of trying to nail them down and having the confidence to back them when you get out into the middle.
“It’s one thing doing it at training and drilling it over and over, but as soon as you’re under pressure you fall back into old habits.
“It’s also trying to find time where you’ve got long enough to try and drill that and become comfortable with it.
“When you play so much cricket, you fall into a pattern where you just turn up and play, travel and play, so there’s not much time to iron out those wrinkles you have in your game.”
Finch can be compared to powerful compatriot David Warner in so many ways, with both having made a success of their limited overs careers.
And Finch says he can use Warner as inspiration when it comes to his Test ambitions because the lefthander has graduated to become a success at the highest level.
“He did it through the T20 route and one-day route, and he’s shown how successful you can be if you just back your ability and you play to your strengths, he added.
Tim Bresnan has not been named in tonight’s 14-man squad having been called back into England’s one-day squad.
Andrew Flintoff could make his comeback to professional cricket after five years away against Yorkshire at Emirates Old Trafford next Friday. The two-time Ashes winner, 36, is on course to play in the NatWest T20 Blast for Lancashire. His comeback, strongly mooted during the last month, was put on hold due to a badly sprained left ankle, although that has now healed. Reports across the Pennines suggest the plan is for him to play second XI cricket next week before returning to the firstteam, possibly against the Vikings.