Around the Grounds: LV=CC Week 3 Preview

Saturday 25th April 2015
& News
Written by Danny Painter

Derbyshire continue their LV= County Championship campaign this weekend against Gloucestershire at Bristol – we take a look around the grounds at this week’s Division Two fixtures.

Gloucestershire v Derbyshire (Bristol)

Derbyshire name an unchanged squad that faced Lancashire at The 3aaa County Ground last week.

Tom Taylor will be hoping to continue his good early-season form after claiming career-best figures of 6-61 versus Lancashire, while Wes Durston will be looking to build on his 85 and there was also a good knock from opener Billy Godleman who hit 76.

Jonathan Clare again misses out through injury, but fellow long-term absentee David Wainwright returned to action for Derbyshire Second XI this week as he stepped up his return from injury.

Graeme Welch’s men beat Gloucestershire at Cheltenham last summer when Shivnarine Chanderpaul scored a half century in each innings. Gloucestershire, who drew their opening fixture at Northampton, are also unchanged.

Lancashire v Kent (Emirates Old Trafford)

A tough task for a Kent team who lost their opening game at Essex. They have not won any of seven Championship games in Lancashire since David Fulton and Andrew Symonds hit centuries at Aigburth in 2002.

But the former West Indies all-rounder Brendan Nash returns to the squad after missing the Essex game with illness, and young paceman Matt Hunn is also included. Lancashire have added Karl Brown, Nathan Buck and Jordan Clark to the 11 who claimed an opening victory at Derbyshire for the new cricket director Ashley Giles.

Leicestershire v Northamptonshire (Grace Road)

Australian seamer Clint McKay is set to make his debut for Leicestershire after missing their opening match of the season, a draw against Glamorgan, because it clashed with his wedding.

That draw extended the county’s run of LV= County Championship matches without a win to 33 stretching back to September 2012, the worst in the competition since Northamptonshire in the 1930s.

These teams have drawn their last four matches. Ben Raine, a 23-year-old all-rounder from Sunderland, has signed a two-year contract extension with Leicestershire, and the highly-rated young seamer Olly Stone has signed on for another year with Northants.

They must decide whether to include Josh Cobb against his old county and Kyle Coetzer, the former Scotland captain who was also omitted from their opening draw against Gloucestershire, is also pressing for selection.

Surrey v Essex (Kia Oval)

James Foster, the Essex captain, says his team are relishing taking on the Surrey “superstars”, including Kumar Sangakkara and Kevin Pietersen, after winning their opening game against Kent.

That was a sixth consecutive win for Essex after their strong finish to the 2014 season, and they cross the Thames aiming to extend the run to seven which would be their best since 1995-96.

But they are still without Ravi Bopara because of his IPL commitments, and Tom Westley is out after breaking his thumb.

Surrey have yet to name their squad after Chris Tremlett missed the Glamorgan game with a hamstring injury but Pietersen is on the brink of making a small slice of club history, having scored 998 from 16 first-class innings since he joined them from Hampshire in 2010. Mark Ramprakash and Zander de Bruyn are Surrey’s fastest to 1,000 first-class runs, having done so in 18 innings.

Click here to view Division Two table >>

Click here to view Mark Butcher’s LV=CC preview >>

Photography: David Griffin

Derbyshire are back in action on Sunday when they travel to Bristol to face Gloucestershire for the start of the LV= County Championship fixture. The next fixture back at The 3aaa County Ground begins on Sunday 10 May when Derbyshire entertain Northamptonshire. You can save £4 per adult ticket by purchasing in advance of the game. Click here to purchase>>

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