Ryan ten Doeschate is desperate to secure final spot at Lord’s with Essex
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Essex captain Ryan ten Doeschate is determined to send his team back to Lords, ahead of the Royal London Cup semi-final with Nottinghamshire today (1.30pm).
The Eagles have not reached a semi-final in their last six attempts, and last year went out to Warwickshire in the Royal London Cup, and to today’s opponents a game away from T20 Finals Day.
Unbeaten at Chelmsford this season, Essex will face a tough test to preserve that record when they come up against a Nottinghamshire side that beat Somerset by 24 runs in the quarter-final after setting the West Country side a mammoth target of 430 for victory.
“We’re desperate to get to another Lord’s final,” said ten Doeschate yesterday.
“It has been nine years since we had a crack at doing that.
“It’s a great day in a county cricketer’s career to go down to Lord’s and play in the showpiece of white-ball cricket.
“We do carry some scars of getting to this stage and bombing out, but there is nothing to fear.
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“Tomorrow is going to be a tough game, no doubt about that, they’re a very good side, but the upside of it is it would be a fantastic achievement to go to Lord’s again.”
Essex’s last trip to Lord’s was nine years ago when ten Doeschate was in the side which won the Friends Provident Trophy final against Kent.
“I just remember the occasion when we got there last time in 2008,” the South African-born skipper added.
“We had suits made up and there was a big build-up. But the elation and the celebration at the end, and what it meant to the club, is one of the key memories for me of my whole career.
“That makes it all the more reason why everyone is so keen to get there this time.”
The final is July 1, the day after ten Doeschate’s 37th birthday. “I’ll be an old man if we get there,” he laughed. “Hopefully we can make it a double celebration.”
Essex have won five games in succession in the Royal London Cup but face an Outlaws team that have won six of the last eight meetings between the sides in the competition.
Essex will be boosted by Alastair Cook’s form, the ex-England captain coming into the game having posted four successive scores of 50-plus (109, 67*, 65 & 54) in the group stages.
Notts’ Brendan Taylor, meanwhile, recorded his highest ever List A score against Somerset, 154.