Briggs Makes Royals Return
May 19 2011
HAMPSHIRE ROYALS v NORTHANTS STEELBACKS
CLYDESDALE BANK 40
FRIDAY 20 MAY (16:40 start)
THE ROSE BOWL
Hampshire will be looking to bounce back from defeat to Durham last Sunday as they take on the Northants Steelbacks at The Rose Bowl on Friday evening.
A seven-wicket defeat at the Emirates ICG leaves the Royals sitting fifth in the Clydesdale Bank 40 Group B table after one victory and two defeats in their three games so far. Hampshire will be buoyed by the fact that their only victory in this competition this season was at The Rose Bowl as they beat a competitive Warwickshire side by three runs.
Their visitors have enjoyed somewhat more success. The Steelbacks have won all three of their games so far which leaves them sitting second place in the group standings. But the highlight of their campaign so far will also undoubtedly be their pulsating 18 run win over the defending champions.
The good news for Hampshire is that England Lions star, Danny Briggs has been relieved of international duties for this weekend’s fixtures against Northants and Surrey. Having been called up to the national squad for their warm-up match against Sri Lanka at Derbyshire the Lions have decided to go with an all-seam attack, meaning the Isle of Wight spinner is available for his county.
He’ll join a bowling group that includes Dimitri Mascarenhas. The former club captain looks likely to be playing his first match at The Rose Bowl since June of last year.
However, Briggs’ England teammate, Jimmy Adams has been selected to play for the Lions so he leaves a hole in the top of the order that may well be filled by the fit-again Johann Myburgh. The South African has recovered from his hamstring injury that meant he sat out Hampshire’s last match against Durham.
Youngster Benny Howell is likely to retain his place – also at the top of the order – after he top-scored with 66 in that match (click here for Howell's reaction).
The Steelbacks travel to The Rose Bowl in fine form as they look to confirm their status as genuine CB40 challengers. It has clearly been a team effort to earn this excellent start to this competition, however, there have been some star performers for the side currently sitting second in Group B.
Northants are likely to remain unchanged from their victory over the Bears two weeks ago. That means a start for Northants’ 2010 Twenty20 star, Sri Lankan Chaminda Vaas – a man known to Rose Bowl fans from his brief stint at the club in 2003.
And they’ll also be keeping an eye on Steelbacks skipper, Andrew Hall. The South African born all-rounder has already claimed a five wicket haul in this competition as he demolished Leicestershire in the opening round of fixtures.
Former England under-19 player Alex Wakely, who hit an unbeaten 78 against Durham and Niall O’Brian who smashed 94 against Leicestershire, will also be looking to build upon their impressive starts in the competition.
|(7) Sean Ervine
||(18) David Griffiths
|(8) Liam Dawson
||(19) Dimitri Mascarenhas
|(10) Simon Jones
||(19) Danny Briggs
|(12) Dominic Cork*
||(25) Chris Wood
|(13) Benny Howell
||(27) Neil McKenzie
|(14) James Vince
||(98) Johann Myburgh
|(16) Michael Bates+
Live text commentary will be available for this match. Visit Hampshire Cricket’s Facebook and Twitter pages for all the major incidents as they happen. BBC Radio Solent will also be broadcasting live ball-by ball coverage online and the match will also be broadcast live on Sky Sports TV.
Tickets are still available for this match. Click here to buy online or visit our match-day ticket office to buy on the gates.
Words: Simon Vincent
Images: LMI Photography