Mustard relishing Outlaws challenge

Durham captain Phil Mustard admits that it has been a tough start to the season in the Championship and is targeting victory in Sunday’s CB40 clash with Nottinghamshire to regain some momentum (Durham 11/10, Notts 8/11 – Match Prices).

The north-east outfit have yet to win a four-day game in 2012, with three defeats and three draws, and will have to make a dramatic improvement over the remainder of the campaign in order to avoid being cut adrift at the bottom of the standings.

The Riverside club have now become a real force in county cricket after making their debut 20 years ago and claimed the Division One Championship title in 2008 and 2009.

They competed well for the majority of last season before falling away to finish third but have struggled to come to terms with early-season conditions and have claimed just five batting bonus points to date.

Mustard’s charges have fared better in the shortened version of the game and have won two out of three CB40 matches, with victory over Somerset and Scotland, while losing to Surrey.

And although the former England one-day keeper would love to make it win number three on Sunday, he made it clear that the four-day game is just as important (Mustard  7/2 РTop Durham Batsman).

“We want to win every game we play whether it’s one-day, four-day or T20,” he said. “There’s no getting away from our results in the Championship or the way we have played. We can’t hide from that, but we wouldn’t want to.”

But the hard-hitting left-hander admits that getting the right result this weekend could aid their chances of climbing the four-day table, adding: “Winning becomes a habit, and that is a habit we want to get back into.”

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