Chris Wood believes his excellent limited-overs form can propel him back into the Championship reckoning.
The left-arm seamer grabbed one-day best figures of five for 22 in the CB40 demolition of Glamorgan on Friday night – his first five-wicket haul in the competition – and will be bidding to follow that when Hampshire host Somerset today.
But while Wood has been overlooked for selection in the four-day game in recent weeks, he is hopeful his form with the white ball can get him back in the side ahead of what promises to be an exciting climax to the season.
Wood said: ‘If I’m bowling well in the CB40, it gives me more of a chance to get back in the Championship side.
‘I want to be a major player here at Hampshire and play in all formats so I will be trying my hardest to force my way into the side tomorrow (for the game against Northants).
‘I understand that we have got seven or eight high-class bowlers here and they are the boys in form with the red ball at the minute.’
Neil McKenzie starred with the bat in Cardiff to crack 94 but Wood was the key man with the ball as he picked up his fine haul, while Danny Briggs (four for 32) provided some capable support.
And while Wood was delighted with his figures and contribution, he reserved special praise for McKenzie who built the victory platform for the Royals.
Wood said: ‘It was brilliant. Neil’s knock in the first innings was outstanding and we were gunning for about 220 at the start of the day.
‘But then we saw on the television that an average winning score was about 190, so we reassessed.
‘The boys went in and played around him.
‘To top it off, the bowling and the fielding was as good as it’s been this season in the one-day format.
‘Neil’s innings was as good as I’ve seen and was right up there with the one up at Nottinghamshire in the Friends Life t20.
‘He is a world-class player still. He fits in our side brilliantly and people can just play around him.
‘It’s always nice to get wickets. I’ve done well previously in this competition and I’d like to keep that going and keep my place in the side with Dimi Mascarenhas coming back soon.
‘It’s not all about taking wickets but I’d like to think that, with that performance, I will be there or thereabouts next time around.
‘I just tried to hit an area as many times as I could and luckily it was my day.
‘It was my first five-wicket haul and hopefully it’s the first of many.’
The Royals now look in good shape with two home games this week against Somerset and Northants.
Wood said: ‘We’re back on top of the table and hopefully we will stay there.
‘We’ve got two games at home which are vital.
‘To win two would be nice, but if we can win of them, it would set us up.
‘If we can beat Somerset we will be there or thereabouts.’