HOW DID the universe come into being? How long is a piece of string? When is a headbutt not a headbutt?
To these and other imponderables can be added the question: how did Yorkshire fail to qualify for the knockout stages of last summer’s T20 Blast?
After all, they possessed one of the strongest squads in the country, scored more than 150 runs in each of their 11 completed innings (seven of which were over 180, and four over 220), and, according to first team coach Andrew Gale, played better even than when they reached the final itself in 2012.
Speaking after the announcement of Yorkshire’s T20 fixtures for next summer, which begin with a home game against Durham on July 5, Gale said: “I believe we played the best T20 cricket we’ve ever played last season.
“Our away form cost us qualification, and it was so frustrating to see Finals Day because I felt that had we got through the qualifying stages and got to the knockout stages, we could have won the competition.
“We were full of confidence, broke lots of records and we know the small areas we need to work on to get to the knockout stages next season.
“We are excited about that block of fixtures, and we’ll put a lot of hard work in during the winter.”
Yorkshire, who have only twice reached Finals Day in the tournament’s history, have been handed three home Friday night matches against Birmingham, Northants and Notts.
The much-anticipated home Roses game takes place on Thursday August 9, with demand set to be even greater due to a reduced capacity as building work continues to take place at Emerald Headingley’s Football Stand end.
Members and T20 season ticket holders can reserve their tickets for this fixture online or via the ticket office from 11am today, with general admission for all T20 games set to go on sale in the spring, along with tickets to see the Yorkshire Diamonds women’s team.
The Diamonds kick-off their Kia Super League programme away to Western Storm on July 22.
The men’s T20 spans a six-week period in July and August, followed by Finals Day at Edgbaston on September 15.
Mark Arthur, the Yorkshire chief executive, echoed Gale’s determination for the club to do well in the tournament next year.
“We learned an awful lot of lessons from last season,” said Arthur.
“The coaching staff and players have been forensic in looking at what went on last season.
“They’re looking to build on some of the positives, including the club’s record total in the Blast, and they will be looking to build on their experiences of last year.
“We have to be honest, though, and say that complacency set in from time to time with individuals and we’ve got to make sure that doesn’t happen again next season.”
Yorkshire’s County Championship and Royal London Cup fixtures are announced at 11am today.
It was so frustrating to see Finals Day because I felt that had we got through the qualifying stages and got to the knockout stages, we could have won the competition.Yorkshire coach, Andrew Gale