The story of both sides’ seasons has been the draw, in the main. Between them they have seven, with Warwickshire in particular needing to pick up points if they still want to harbour increasingly fading hopes of retaining their title.
Yorkshire come into the clash at Headingley 14 points ahead of the Bears and hoping to build on their draw with Lancashire.
Having had concerns over the form of Will Rhodes, Mark Robinson will be encouraged by the return to the runs for his skipper with a stylish 99 against Northamptonshire.
However, top order batsmen Alex Davies and Rob Yates continued without a score despite the batting friendly conditions in Birmingham. Davies’s average of a snip above 25 (25.83) and Yates’s of a little over 18 (18.42) will be a real point of concern for last year’s champions.
Sam Hain’s impressive 202* in the game with Northamptonshire ended a run of a few non-scores and will hopefully give the middle order batsman the impetus he needs to go on and find some more runs as spring turns into summer.
In the bowling department, ex-Yorkshire quick Oliver Hannon-Dalby has begun the season impressively with 19 wickets and will be hoping to take his form into the clash with his former side at Headingley.
Meanwhile, Yorkshire’s engrossing battle with Lancashire in the last round of the County Championship caught the attention of many, not least for the obvious interest in the number of England players, or future England players, involved.
Having been made to follow on by a resurgent Lancashire who had their tails up searching for a first County Championship Roses win at Headingley since 2011, some impressive rear guard action from Harry Brook ensured Yorkshire escaped with a draw.
Joe Root’s first innings 147 was merely a continuation of the former England skipper’s stunning last 18 months, while Brook, thought to be in contention to be the next cab off the England top order rank will be encouraged by his scores of 41 and 82*.
With Yorkshire having drawn four of their five games so far, clearly taking 20 wickets has proved a problem. That issue could be about to get a lot worse, with overseas star Haris Rauf lining up for Yorkshire for the final time on Thursday.
His 15 wickets so far this season puts him at the top of the county’s wicket-taking charts and his presence will surely be missed in the four-day side.
Sam Hain’s 202* against Northamptonshire offered some welcome relief to a top order that have found consistent runs hard to come by. Against a Yorkshire attack that Lancashire found some joy against, Warwickshire’s top order might find themselves batting on a Headingley pitch that really can be cashed in upon.
Haris Rauf has really impressed for Yorkshire in his stay, and at the end of the block of the first set of County Championship fixtures Ottis Gibson will be hoping the Pakistan quick can go out with a bang. With the likes of Davies and Yates struggling for runs, there are some obvious vulnerabilities that Yorkshire’s bowling department should look to expose. Rauf, if he finds his lengths as he has been, will be key to their hopes of doing such.
Yorkshire: Steven Patterson (captain), Dom Bess, Harry Brook, Harry Duke (WK), Will Fraine, George Hill, Tom Loten, Will Luxton, Adam Lyth, Haris Rauf, Matthew Revis, Joe Root, Jordan Thompson
Warwickshire: Will Rhodes (captain), Chris Benjamin, Danny Briggs, Henry Brookes, Michael Burgess, Alex Davies, Sam Hain. Olly Hannon-Dalby. Matt Lamb, Nathan McAndrew. Craig Miles, Dom Sibley, Rob Yates
The weather forecast is a concern. While a sunny day with highs of 20 degrees is expected on Thursday, rain is due to follow on Friday. Both sides will hope the game will have moved on adequately for the weather on Saturday to be harnessed to try and force a result over the weekend.
Sunday is cloudy, but as yet no rain is expected.
Odds (Sky Bet)
Yorkshire – 4/6
Warwickshire – 11/10