RYAN ten Doeschate is hoping Essex Eagles’ Royal London One-Day Cup semi-final against Notts Outlaws tomorrow is ‘another step on the way to winning the tournament’.

The captain is looking to make it 14 wins from 16 games this season by beating Nottinghamshire at the Essex County Ground.

Notts overcame Somerset in the quarter-final to book their semi-final berth and welcome back Alex Hales and Jake Ball after they were granted permission to play by the ECB, with both competing in England’s ICC Champions Trophy campaign.

But ten Doeschate is pleased Essex will get to play against the best as they bid to secure a final place at Lord’s on July 1.

“You are measured on trophies,” he said.

“Getting to this point is an achievement but it is all about getting to Lord’s and winning at Lord’s. This is just a step along the way.

“We carry a few scars from previous years, having made this stage only to bomb out.

“But we are giving ourselves a chance and we need to try and play our best and see where we end up.

“We have done our research on Notts,” he added.

“They are a quality side and are well covered in all departments. They have big hitters and accomplished middle order batsmen as well as quick seamers so it is a great challenge for us.

“We want to play a full strength team and I hope that will bring the best out of us.”

Ten Doeschate took over the limited-overs captaincy from Ravi Bopara at the start of the season, and the early signs are it is benefitting both players.

The Dutchman hit 168 not out in his last match, while Bopara struck an unbeaten 121 in a warm-up game on Wednesday.

And ten Doeschate says the whole team is chipping in to good effect this season.

“We don’t rely on one or two guys,” he said.

“The runs and wickets are spread out. Guys like Paul Walter can come in and do well. He won us a crucial game against Middlesex when we looked dead and buried.

“We have a lot of match winners and that is what you need.”

It is set to be a dry day at Chelmsford, with play getting underway at 1.30pm.

And ten Doeschate has no doubt the crowd will play an important role.

He said: “For a non Test ground, this place surpasses all other grounds in terms of atmosphere and support.

"The weather is set fair so it should be another great occasion for all involved.”