Enjoyment the key-du Plessis
Enjoyment the key-du Plessis

Francois du Plessis has admitted that he will have to be a little bit conservative with bat in hand if he is to transfer his sparkling one-day form into the County Championship arena later this week.

The South African has been the linchpin of Lancashire's fine form in the limited overs arena of late, bashing two Friends Provident Trophy hundreds and a Twenty20 career best 78 not against Leicestershire on Sunday.

He has picked up two man of the match awards in front of the Sky Television cameras, and Lancashire have won four consecutive Twenty20 Cup matches.

But now the question of whether he can shine against the red ball in LV Division One is one that remains unanswered. Somerset are the visitors to Old Trafford on Saturday.

"I am really looking forward to getting back to Championship cricket because I am in good form now," said 24 year-old Faf. "But it is all about getting in and spending some time at the crease. I have got to change my game, but I am looking forward to the challenge."

Du Plessis has made no secret of desire to notch three figures in four-day cricket for his adopted county, and has also said many a time that the movement through the air and off the pitch in England has caused him problems: "I have got to be a little bit tighter," he said.

But, before Saturday's visit of Justin Langer, Marcus Trescothick and company, Lancashire have got two more Twenty20 Cup North Division fixtures to play out with the aim of putting themselves on the brink of qualifying for the knockout stages.

Former captain Stuart Law and his new Derbyshire Phantoms side come to Old Trafford on Tuesday looking to end Lancashire's winning streak, which has seen them move to the top of the North Division with eight points.

The Lightning advanced to the last eight with 13 points last season. Should they beat Derbyshire tonight and Durham on Thursday, also at Old Trafford, they will sit on 12 points with four games to play.

Du Plessis, though, has urged his colleagues to not get too carried away: "As soon as you look at what's going to happen too far ahead, you take your attention off everything else," he said.

"We are enjoying our cricket. Everyone is doing well. When you are part of a winning team, everyone is happy."

Fellow South African Ashwell Prince said: "We are playing positive cricket. We are getting performances from all over the dressing room. Everyone is chipping in, and it's a great team effort."

Derbyshire currently sit second in the North Division with four points, level with Yorkshire and Durham. The game at Old Trafford gets underway at 5.30pm.
Graham Hardcastle
Photo: John Riding
(c) Lancashire CCC Ltd

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