In the first of two Leicestershire Durham meetings this weekend, the Foxes host the Jets at Grace Road under television cameras. Both teams are coming into this match on the back of losses; in Durham’s case a comprehensive loss to Warwickshire just last night.
They will be aiming to put that behind them and move forward to tonight’s match and secure a win over their hosts, the Leicestershire Foxes. The experience in their side – Paul Collingwood, Mark Stoneman and Phil Mustard for instance – will be able to rally the youngsters and show them how to put a loss behind them.
They will also be able to draw on the drive they used to bounce back from a first match loss which they suffered at the hands of the Worcestershire Rapids to secure back to back wins.
Leicestershire on the other hand have had an equally up and down season having played one match fewer than Durham but lost two and won just the one; against bottom of the table and nought in three team, Yorkshire.
Clint McKay’s presence in the Leicestershire ranks seems to be having a positive effect on the rest of the players as well; they will all be pulling together, inspired by the big Australian’s prowess, to secure their second win of the season.
The conditions at Leicester are look good for bowling first so both captains will be eyeing the toss up and hoping it falls their way. With bowling fire-power like McKay for Leicestershire and Barry McCarthy for Durham the batsmen could be in for a real testing night.
Leicestershire’s overseas signing Clint McKay could be the man to slice through the Jets’ batting line-up like a hot knife through butter. The weather is offering him some assistance as well so the batsmen will need to be on their guard when the ball is tossed McKay’s way.
Durham’s experienced man Paul Collingwood has to be the pick of the men for this evening’s match. At home, he is greeted on and off the field with cheers, woops and raucous applause all because he is considered to be a legend of the game. His skills with the bat have allowed him to finish 44* and 40* in his last two matches and he’s nothing to sniff at with the ball either.
Form (so far)
Leicestershire Foxes: LWL
Durham Jets: LWWL
Leicestershire Foxes squad: Mark Pettini (C), Mark Cosgrove, Neil Dexter, Lewis Hill, Clint McKay, Jigar Naik, Kevin O’Brien, Niall O’Brien, Ben Raine, Umar Akmal, Tom Wells
Durham Jets squad: Mark Stoneman (C), Usman Arshad, Scott Borthwick, Graham Clark, Paul Collingwood, Paul Coughlin, Keaton Jennings, Barry McCarthy, Phil Mustard (wkt), Ryan Pringle, Michael Richardson.
Weather and conditions:
The weather will be practically balmy for the evening in Leicester. It will be cloudy initially but after the first hour that should disperse and sun should stream down on the ground for the evening with temperatures in the high teens.
Date:Saturday 4th June
Ground:The Fischer County Ground, Grace Road
Umpires: David Millins, Tim Robinson, Paul Baldwin (TV umpire)
Odds (Sky Bet): Leicestershire Foxes 1/1, Durham Jets 4/5