Derbyshire welcome Glamorgan to the Incora County Ground this week in a battle of second versus third in the LV County Championship Division Two table with the hosts sitting one place and 14 points above their Welsh visitors. Derbyshire also find themselves one point below first place Nottinghamshire and will be hoping with a good result they can both keep Glamorgan at bay and overtake their East Midlands rivals.Glamorgan will be buoyed by the recent arrival of Marnus Labuschagne. Despite his failures against Middlesex, he is a formidable addition to their batting line up, who along with Chris Cooke, Kiran Carlson and Sam Northeast will be looking to score big on a pitch which has yielded runs so far this season. The Derbyshire batting line up has also been supplemented this year by an overseas signing in Shan Masood who so far this season has scored 611 First Class runs at an average of 152.75. Along with a resurgent Wayne Madsen, he has added steel and formidability to the Batting line up.
There is similar mirroring in the bowling attacks too, each supplemented by experienced overseas bowlers in Lakmal and Neser. While Derbyshire’s is a young attack of Connors, Potts, McKiernan and Thompson, Glamorgan’s is an older attack with James Harris and Michael Hogan the main threats. Which will be more successful here will be interesting to watch.
Derbyshire When you sign an overseas player you want them to have an immediate impact, a match winning impact, one which justifies bringing them in. In Shan Masood, Derbyshire have had just that. He has scored 611 runs in three First Class matches this season, and helped a batting order that looked frail last season score over 500 twice already. We can measure his impact not just in his output in numbers but also the effect he has had on others around him. His fellow batters look calmer and more assured at the crease, and have secured more batting bonus points (11) in the first three matches than they did in the first ten matches before the competition split last season. Masood’s contribution to this cannot be overestimated and nor should his importance to the chances of success for Derbyshire in this game.
Glamorgan People are often looking for the next young star to come through the ranks, when they don’t realise how lucky they already have a star, just maybe not a youngish one. In James Harris that is exactly what Glamorgan have. So far this season he has taken five wickets in two matches at a smidge over 22, whilst also going at just 2.25 runs an over , offering real control to his captain Cooke. Harris has previously represented England Lions and while that ship may well have sailed now, he still offers match winning quality for Glamorgan. If he performs this week, then it may well put Glamorgan in a winning position.
For Derbyshire, the old adage of never change a winning team may well apply this week. Mattie McKiernan who replaced Luis Reece will expect to keep his place after scoring his maiden First Class century last time out. Ryan Sidebottom returns to the squad after recovering from a hamstring injury picked up on the opening day of the season.
Derbyshire squad: Billy Godleman (c), Harry Came, Sam Conners, Anuj Dal, Brooke Guest (wk) , Suranga Lakmal, Wayne Madsen, Mattie McKiernan Shawn Masood, Leus du Plooy, Nick Potts, Luis Reece, Ryan Sidebottom , Alex Thomson
For Glamorgan, slow left arm spinner Prem Sisodiya and wicket keeper batter Tom Cullen come into the squad, replacing Dan Douthwaite and Callum Taylor.
Glamorgan squad: David Lloyd (c), Chris Cooke, Kiran Carlson, Tom Cullen , James Harris, Michael Hogan, Marnus Labuschagne, Michael Neser, Sam Northeast, Andrew Salter, Prem Sisodiya, Timm van der Gugten, James Weighell
Weather and Conditions
The weather looks set fair for the four days of the match and there shouldn’t be any interruptions for inclement weather. You’ll need your jumper though with temperatures around 12 or 13 degrees for all four days. The previous championship match at Derby produced two team innings of over 500, so expect a good pitch and bowlers having to work hard for their wickets.
Date: 28th April – 1st May
Time: 11.00 am
Ground: Incora County Ground, Derby
Odds (SkyBet): Derbyshire 10/11 Glamorgan 4/5