Take two teams, one that has taken 50-over cricket by storm and another who knows what it takes to play, and lose, a final, add a dash of England internationals and simmer for 100, breathless overs to get this: The Royal London One-Day Cup final.
Nottinghamshire and Surrey do battle against each other for the first time in the competition this season, both bidding for the opening trophy of the season at Lord’s.
It’s a prize that looks set to be overdue for both teams, with Notts trophyless since winning the One-Day Cup equivalent in 2013, while the Browncaps have been here and lost in the past two seasons.
And as you’d expect in a knockout competition, both teams arrive in the capital in form.
The Midlanders have enjoyed a play-off and semi-final of dreams, racking up 429 thanks to a wonderful century from Brendan Taylor.
Somerset, to their credit, mustered more than 400 in their response, though the Nottinghamshire bowling line-up just about held their own.
If their performance at Taunton was majestic, then their one at Chelmsford was meteoric, as Samit Patel and Steven Mullaney both blazed hundreds in a record 50-over chase at Chelmsford. Confidence is certainly among that particular camp.
Surrey meanwhile also came through the play-off system from third place in the group, battling in victory at both Yorkshire and Worcestershire to secure their Lord’s place.
The first was to come via, who else, Kumar Sangakkara, the old dog showing old tricks in making 121 against the White Rose on their old patch. Take that, said Surrey, as Ravi Rampaul, Jade Dernbach and Tom Curran all starred with wickets.
From there they took apart Worcestershire, first through Jason Roy and Ben Foakes – the ever-reliable all-rounder, with gloves and bat, before Gareth Batty returned to haunt his old club.
Five wickets and nine overs, coupled with a mighty celebration with each of them, showed he has old scores to settle.
Those come in the form of Royal London heartache. Twice Surrey have been here, twice they have been in commanding positions, and twice they have lost.
The first was to come at the hands of Gloucestershire, a side second-favourites who won by just a handful or runs, before Jonathan Trott ground Warwickshire to victory in a way only the former England batsman could.
If there’s a man to describe run-scoring by the bucketload, then pick Samit Patel and then pick him again.
Two double-hundreds in his County Championship repertoire tell their own story, but these were not just innings to judge from a scorecard, they were ones of brilliance, power and excellence.
Then you talk about his One-Day Cup form. Before the knockouts came an unbeaten century against Lancashire in the penultimate game, while only rain stopped him in the next outing.
From there came 66 in the behemoth score against Somerset, and then the sprinkle upon cherry upon icing upon cake, an unbeaten 122 in a record chase against Essex. That it finished with two streaky fours was a disservice to what was pure brilliance from a man who knows no end to his run-making abilities.
Which means he will be out for a duck. That he is keeping James Pattinson and Stuart Broad, Ashes bowling rivals, Alex Hales, Steven Mullaney and Brendan Taylor says it all.
The same could be said for Surrey. Jason Roy, Gareth Batty, Kumar Sangakkara, Ben Foakes and Jade Dernbach could all take this honour, but it falls upon Tom Curran.
The elder sibling is too in form, bursting with confidence having made his England debut in the T20 series with South Africa.
The Notts batting unit is power-punched, so the key to restricting runs will come via the wickets, and Curran knows how to take a scalp.
Still only 22, Curran removed Gary Ballance – a man almost marauding his way to an England call-up for a mere 36 in the play-off, just as he looked to get going.
He was to also play down Matthew Waite’s superb, late cameo, while he too knows which end to hold a bat, and then some.
It’s a tale of two fast bowlers for Notts, with Jake Ball – who missed out in the final in 2013 due to selection – this time sitting on the sidelines with injury.
Stuart Broad meanwhile has overcome a heel problem to take his place in the starting XI as Notts look to make the most of their incredible international options.
Nottinghamshire squad: TBC
Surrey have named a fourteen-man squad for tomorrow’s Royal London One-Day Cup final.
The squad is the same as that which beat Worcestershire in the semi-final, with all-rounder Scott Borthwick, fast bowler Stuart Meaker and batsman Dominic Sibley joining the XI that lined up at New Road.
Surrey squad: Gareth Batty (captain), Scott Borthwick, Rory Burns, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Jade Dernbach, Ben Foakes (wk), Stuart Meaker, Ollie Pope, Ravi Rampaul, Jason Roy, Kumar Sangakkara, Dominic Sibley, Mark Stoneman
Weather and conditions
It’s July, but that doesn’t mean the summer is over! It’s expected to be dry at Lord’s, hooray, if a little overcast, with the sun peaking through on occasion in the capital. Take a brolly though, just in case. All being well you can use it to protect yourself from the sun, though it is a modest 21.
Date: July 1 2017
Venue: Lord’s Cricket Ground
Odds: Nottinghamshire 5/6 Surrey 5/6