Tommo makes the switch

James Tomlinson, centre. Picture: Neil Marshall

James Tomlinson, centre. Picture: Neil Marshall

Chris Stone

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James Tomlinson will attempt to transfer his Championship form to the limited overs game as he returns to the one-day ranks this weekend.

The left-arm seamer has been included in the Hampshire squad that will visit Derbyshire tomorrow and then move on to face Lancashire on Sunday in the new Royal London One-Day Cup.

Tomlinson played just two matches in the Yorshire Bank 40 campaign last season and had to go back to 2010 to find his previous outing in a limited overs game.

Although he freely admits his fielding can be exposed in the faster-paced shorter formats, his bowling accuracy, intelligence and experience is a useful weapon in any form of the game.

But the return to a 50-over format sees him back in the frame where he will be keen to add to his healthy haul of 34 wickets in Championship division two so far this term.

And he is looking to utilise some of his skills with the red ball if he gets the nod to lead the attack with the white ball.

Tomlinson said: ‘It would be great to play.

‘I think we are all looking forward to this new 50-over competition and we’re excited about what we can achieve.

‘We’ve shown we are a good side in limited overs cricket and I want to be a part of that.

‘I will probably look to do what I do in the four-day game and bowl a bit like I do in Championship cricket.

‘But I am excited by the prospect of bowling up front with the new ball – something I regularly do in four-day cricket.’

While the 32-year-old club stalwart is attempting to maintain many of his Championship skills, he has also been in the nets to work on some of his specific one-day deliveries.

He said: ‘There are a few new rules with fielding restrictions and two new balls in the innings.

‘You can bowl two bouncers an over, which I very much intend to do.

‘I have been practising my yorkers a bit over the last week and that is what I will go straight to during the powerplay in the middle of the innings and at the end of the innings.

‘But I think the key for me will be to keep it simple.

‘I have a cutter, a yorker, a bouncer and obviously accuracy of length – something I have learnt over many years of playing Championship cricket.’

While the rule tweaks are intended to strike the right balance between bat and ball, Tomlinson expects to come in for some stick from batsmen who have the opportunity to dominate.

Tomlinson said: ‘In this format, they get a longer time to bat and the powerplays are seriously harsh on the bowlers.

‘The figures might not look too pretty if we don’t get it right.

‘Having to keep five fielders in the inner circle throughout the game and only three fielders out during the powerplay is going to be seriously tough.’

Tomlinson also believes the block of fixtures in the same competition will allow batsmen to thrive.

He said: ‘I am not just saying this because I am a bowler but this competition is set over only a few weeks and I think you will find that batters will start finding form pretty quickly.

‘The weather has been superb recently, wickets will be flat and we will see plenty of runs.’

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