SSCC Preview: Warwickshire v Hampshire

SSCC Preview: Warwickshire v Hampshire

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Photo © Luke Adams

Hampshire, in the final game of the season, have some very real relegation fears thanks to their capitulation at the hands of Essex last week.

They sit sixth and 13 points outside the drop zone, meaning survival is entirely in their own hands – 12 points guarantees safety – but the champions having won following-on puts far more pressure on Hampshire than they would have hoped or expected.

Their only saving grace, aside from the permutations being relatively straightforward, is that Warwickshire have won just a single Specsavers County Championship match all season, and that was away from home.

Four of their six games at Edgbaston have ended in defeat with them currently on a run of three straight home losses.

But, having already been relegated, the opportunity to prove a point and for players to try and cement a place in the side next year may propel Warwickshire to ending the season strong – they pushed Yorkshire hard last week.

Key Men

Even in a season dire as this has been, Jeetan Patel has been a standout for Warwickshire. Their leading wicket-taker and second top runscorer, Patel is a very useful lower-order batsman and his spin offers a tricky test. His 6-50, following a first-innings century, nearly led them to victory at Headingley and a similar performance could well push Hampshire into the mire.

When Mason Crane was called into the England Test squad for the first time, it was mere hours before a T20 against Glamorgan. On Wednesday, he could be drafted for Australia while playing and this is a perfect chance to show why he deserves the call, should it come. Crane didn’t play last week on what ended up being a spin-friendly pitch; with Patel in the hosts’ ranks, they are unlikely to misread the surface like that again.

Team News

Warwickshire make three changes to the 14 taken to Headingley, with Oliver Hannon-Dalby, Sam Hain, and Sunny Singh all being included. Opener Liam Banks batted nearly three hours across his two innings last week on his first-class debut and is retained, though Hain’s inclusion could see him miss out on a second appearance.

Warwickshire squad: Jonathan Trott (C), Tim Ambrose (wk), Liam Banks, Ian Bell, Sam Hain, Oliver Hannon-Dalby, Matthew Lamb, Jeetan Patel, Boyd Rankin, Dominic Sibley, Ryan Sidebottom, Sunny Singh, Alex Thomson, Chris Wright

An unchanged squad for Hampshire from their defeat to Essex.

Hampshire squad: George Bailey (c), Tom Alsop (wk), Kyle Abbott, Jimmy Adams, Gareth Berg, Mason Crane, Liam Dawson, Fidel Edwards, Sean Ervine, Ian Holland, James Vince, Joe Weatherley, Brad Wheal

Form

Warwickshire: LLLLW

Hampshire: LDDDD

Weather and conditions

Early morning rain on Monday could delay the start but it is expected to be dry for the week, albeit overcast throughout.

Date: 25th-28th September 2017

Time: 10:30am

Ground: Edgbaston

Odds (SkyBet): Warwickshire 11/8, Hampshire 4/7

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