Patience and plenty of it.
That's what selector-coach Sam Curtis wants his Wairarapa senior men's cricket squad to show in their Hawke Cup qualifying match with Wanganui at Queen Elizabeth Park Oval, Masterton, tomorrow and Sunday.
A series of limited-overs matches have not gone well for Wairarapa this season, culminating as they did with a 298-run thumping at the hands of Hutt Valley last weekend, but Curtis is confident the two-day format will produce a much improved performance this weekend.
"The tempo is a lot different and that should suit us better," he said yesterday. "We can afford to be a lot more patient about how we approach the batting and the bowling and that's got to be a help."
Curtis said the Hutt Valley loss was a classic case of what happened when the bowlers failed to follow the game plan. They needed to bowl full and straight to restrict the areas to which the ball could be hit but instead continually pitched short of length and were regularly dispatched to the boundary.
"It was a good lesson and, hopefully, we have learned from it," Curtis said. "We need to be more disciplined this weekend."
Just how the park oval pitch will play in what will be the first match to be held at headquarters this season will be interesting but past experience suggests to Curtis it will have a green tinge, something which would probably persuade the captain who wins the toss to bowl first.
On the batting front, Wairarapa will be looking for greater solidity from their top order with Curtis stressing the need for them to play each ball on its merits, rather than to fall into the trap of pre-meditating shots and getting themselves out.
"Patience is the key, we have to forget about forcing the pace and make sure wickets are earned rather than given away."
Plans are for young Rathkeale College batsman George Deans to open the innings with Tim Lucas with captain Henry Cameron at three and Joe Hull at four. Wicketkeeper Alex Treseder is at five and then will follow Harry Clinton-Baker and John Wells.
Allrounders Sean Jarvis and Jared Watt will be at eight and nine respectively with spinner Nash Patel and medium pacer Daniel Haxton completing the batting line-up. Also in the squad is Stefan Hook-Sporry, another medium pacer, who will bowl but not bat.