Lancashire believe they are ready to take the final step in limited overs cricket in 2014.
The emerging Lightning have returned a number of encouraging performances against the white ball in recent seasons in both one-day and Twenty20 cricket, although they have been unable to convert that into silverware.
In 2011, they were beaten semi-finalists in Twenty20 by Leicestershire, in 2012 they were knocked out at the same stage of the Clydesdale Bank 40 competition by Warwickshire and last season they were subjected to another couple of near misses.
They were one 40-over win away from a second successive semi-final appearance, while they were narrowly beaten in a high-scoring Twenty20 quarter-final by Hampshire.
But, whilst Peter Moores and his players are obviously desperately keen to challenge in the LV= County Championship during their 150th anniversary campaign, the Red Rose coach is confident his players can be celebrating limited overs success too.
“We want to be really competitive in Division One next season, and we also want to take that next step forward in one-day cricket if we can,” said Moores.
“We've got very close to winning a trophy during the last couple of years. We've been in quarter-finals, semi-finals and Finals Days, but we haven't managed to get over the line. I think that's a real goal for us this year.
“Our staff is a little bit bigger this year, and that gives us more flexibility. To be in all three comps you need a strong squad.”
Lancashire are obviously extremely keen to swell the trophy cabinet at Emirates Old Trafford, but Moores believes there is no need to put added pressure on his players to make sure they strive more to win a trophy just because of the club’s landmark year.
“Our job is to try and win trophies whatever year it is,” he said. “There's no need to put any more pressure on ourselves. It's not going to make us try any harder.
“If I felt 'we are getting complacent, we need to whack more pressure on', then it may be different. But that's not the case. We have got a group of very hungry cricketers here.
“It would be lovely to win a trophy with it being the 150th year, but it doesn't really make any difference for us. I think we are on our journey, on which we have won the Championship once and won another trophy - the Division Two title last year.
“The lads have won a couple of things, and you get used to winning. It's a habit. Getting promoted was fantastic, but winning it was even better because you get to know that out of the nine teams you were the best, which is really important.”
Lancashire were the eighth of the current counties to be formed in January, 1864, and Moores added: “The 150th has come at a great time - a time when we've gone through massive change.
“The ground's changed, we've won a couple of trophies and we've seen a lot of young players coming through. I think it's a great time to say 'let's celebrate the 150 years we've had, but we've got a great platform to go forward'.”
Picture: Kyle Jarvis, Mike Watkinson, Peter Moores and Luis Reece share a joke with the Members at this week's 150th Anniversary Forum
(c) Simon Pendrigh/LCCC