Gareth Berg calls on Hampshire to switch focus away from Lord’s final and back to County Championship task

Gareth Berg has urged his Hampshire team-mates to put their Lord’s date to the back of their minds as they return to Specsavers County Championship action.

Monday, 13th May 2019, 5:39 pm
James Vince, Sam Northeast and Gareth Berg of Hampshire celebrate the wicket of James Anderson during the Royal London One Day Cup Semi-Final match between Hampshire and Lancashire at the Ageas Bowl. Picture: Alex Davidson/Getty Images

Hampshire reached the Royal London One-Day Cup final on Sunday after a convincing four-wicket victory over Lancashire.

They will face Somerset at Lord’s on May 25 as they aim to win the competition for a second successive season.

Before then, Hampshire have back-to-back Championship clashes starting with a trip to Warwickshire, which begins on Tuesday.

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Berg said: ‘We have to find a way of switching off from reaching the Lord’s final.

‘On Monday we were straight off on the bus and our focus switches straight to the red ball again.

‘I think Adi (Birrell) and the senior players will make sure we know our job at hand for the next few days.

‘We will switch on for that and then a day or two before we play at Lord’s we will switch on again for that.

‘Over the years many of us have had to switch off and change formats, it is something we as professional cricketers have to do.

‘If you can’t do that then you will find it very tough and it will show in your performances.’

Mason Crane produced his best bowling spell of the season against Lancashire as he returned figures of three wickets for 42 runs.

And Berg reckons the leg-spinner could be in line to make his first Championship appearance since 2017 at Warwickshire, if the pitch is right for him.

Crane missed the majority of 2018 after suffering a stress fracture in his back.

Berg added: ‘We will go there thinking we will want to get a result.

‘There is usually a good wicket there so it will be interesting to see what the selection is for that.

‘It will be interesting to see if we play a spinner or not, it tends to spin a bit there but we will turn up there and aim to win.

‘Depending on the wickets and selection Mason probably has a good chance of playing. He has been bowling really well.’

James Vince will not be available for the trip to Edgbaston as he continues to fight for a World Cup spot.

With Aiden Markram also unavailable, Joe Weatherley and Oli Soames are likely to slot into a new-look top three.