Thursday, 10 July 2008

Derbyshire v Leicestershire

Can we beat Leicestershire and get back on track? Yes. Will the weather let us? Er...no

The Foxes have had a good start to the season but latterly have made us look like Bradman's Invincibles. Yes, they beat us in the 20/20 at Grace Road, but the game had zero value and we were missing several players.

Tomorrow, John Morris' tricky task has been sorted for him, as Tom Lungley still has a side strain that rules him out. The final decision appears to be between Steve Stubbings and Dan Birch for the opening berth alongside the happily returning Chris Rogers. The team is set to be (pretty much as intimated here the other night)

Rogers
Stubbings/Birch
Telo
Hinds
Clarke
Smith
Pipe
Wagg
Clare
Needham
Langeveldt

Leicester may welcome back South African seamer Dillon du Preez and also look set to introduce on loan Lancashire seamer Tom Smith. Their line-up is set to read:

New
Boyce
Ackerman
Dippenaar
Allenby
Nixon
du Toit
du Preez
Henderson
T.Smith
Malik
Kruger

So Derbyshire v South Africa B... sorry, Leicestershire. Who to win? If the weather stays out of it, for me its a battle between two fragile batting sides, each bolstered by one top class batsman - Rogers for us, Ackerman for them. I am reassured by the length of our batting with Clare at nine, but would love to see him bat, if required at 460-7, rather than 175-7. Boyce and New are talented young players, but the key to this one is likely to be getting Ackerman early as the rest tend to panic when that happens. Nixon is not in the form of previous years, and I hope it stays that way at least until after this game!

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