After a very good start to the season, this week's match against Cardiff MCCU should see a number of players yet to feature in the team this campaign get an opportunity, ahead of next week's game against Gloucestershire at the County Ground. I still think it is crazy we will by then have played nearly half of our home County Championship matches by the first week in May, primarily in temperatures that would have made Scott of the Antarctic stay in his tent. I'm sure we'll all clap the T20 winners in the Champions League in India this October though - the frostbite should be just about sorted by then....
With the above in mind, I would expect to see the attack led by Mark Turner and possibly (if deemed fit) Tim Groenewald, while there could also be an opportunity for Ally Evans, who is on a summer contract. It would also be nice to see Tom Knight back in the side, again assuming his availability from England Under-19 commitments.
As for the batting, my guess would be that Matt Lineker will come in and the game would offer an ideal opportunity for Karl Krikken to see him alongside Paul Borrington and Chesney Hughes in a potential top three, while Second XI keeper Chris Durham could perhaps make a senior start, allowing Tom Poynton a rest after an impressive start to the season.
I dare say that we will see the team soon enough, but this game is not first-class and if Durham does make his debut it will not be regarded as such. Nevertheless, it would be an important career milestone for a talented young player who has talent in front of as well as behind the stumps.
Purely from personal preference I would also like to see Garry Park get a game, a player I have much time for. Park is a battling player - my sort of player - and still worth watching in the field irrespective of what he does with bat or ball. I could see him playing a role in one-day cricket this season and some time in the middle would undoubtedly be useful for him.
Having said all the above, this morning's weather forecast suggests more rain in the coming days.
Happy Spring, everybody...