Saturday, 19 July 2008

Northants v Derbyshire - Pro 40 preview

I suspect we'll see a few changes to the Derbyshire side for tomorrow's game at Northampton.

Rikki will doubtless return after a few runs in the seconds to captain the side and I would assume will replace Paul Borrington.

If we assume that Waggy is fit, there may be a decision to make between playing two spinners or another seamer (either Wayne White or Kevin Dean). Tom Lungley has had an injury ravaged season again after last season's heroics and may no be fit again.

I'd see the side as being pretty close to:

Chris Rogers
Greg Smith
Wavell Hinds
Dan Redfern
Rikki Clarke
James Pipe
Graham Wagg
Jon Clare
Jake Needham
Charl Langeveldt
Wayne White/Nayan Doshi

I'd bring in Dan Redfern over Dan Birch as he is quite frankly a better player. As a batsman he has a full range of shots and as a fielder he is much more lithe. He also offers an extra bowling option, if required and I would like to see him get a run in the side for this competition in preparation for next year and his first professional contract.

I would have loved to see Dan Birch make a fist of County Cricket but he is another who has found the jump from outstanding club player to county too much. There have been odd flashes of brilliance, but generally against weaker attacks and they have been too sporadic for my liking.

As for Northants, they will probably be the same as we have just faced. Maybe Rikki Wessels could come in and Johan Louw may also be a contender, if for no other reason that they haven't quite got enough South Africans playing...

Tough game for us, but one we can win if the batting fires. How often have I written that this season?

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