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Shropshire looking forward to beginning NCCA Championship campaign this weekend


Shropshire are looking forward to beginning their National Counties Cricket Association Championship campaign this weekend.

Wales National County provide the opposition in a three-day match which starts at Brymbo Cricket Club on Sunday (11am).

Shropshire will also play Western Division Two fixtures later this summer against Cornwall at Bridgnorth and Wiltshire at Whitchurch either side of a trip to Wimborne to face Dorset.

“I said at the outset that I thought our strengths would be in the longer formats of the game and so far that has certainly been the case,” said Ed Home, Shropshire’s head of cricket.

“I look at our team for Sunday and it’s nicely balanced. We’ve got numerous bowling options and batting-wise we’ve got plenty of depth.

“The team are all looking forward to it. There are enough experienced cricketers to understand that we want to try and hit the ground running and start well.”

Shropshire make five changes from their last game, the NCCA Trophy group match against Cheshire, which was abandoned just past the halfway stage because of the weather.

First appearance

Bridgnorth spinner Sam Whitney, who decided to stand down as Shropshire’s Championship captain at the end of last season, makes his first appearance for the county this year.

There’s a Shropshire debut for former Staffordshire all-rounder Tim Maxfield, Shrewsbury all-rounder Peter Clark comes into the team, while Jack Home and Sam Ellis, who have played regularly for the county this season, both return.

They replace George Hargrave, Ollie Westbury, Theo Wylie, Matty Simmonds and Andy Sutton, who are all unavailable.

Home added: “We are delighted to have Sam Whitney back. It’s the first game he’s been available to play this season and his skills with both bat and ball will be invaluable for this phase of the season.

“Tim Maxfield has a lot of experience and his record speaks for itself. He’s scored a fair few hundreds and bowled useful seam for Staffordshire. He was keen to get involved and we think he’s a good man to bring in and will give us a little bit of know-how in the middle order.

“Peter Clark did well for us on his debut in the T20 match at Northumberland. He’s produced some good performances for Shrewsbury and scored a hundred against Birmingham League champions Smethwick last weekend.”

Shropshire: Andre Bradford (Swarkestone), Peter Clark (Shrewsbury), Tom Fell (Wolverhampton), Jack Home (Shifnal), Tim Maxfield (West Bromwich Dartmouth), Charlie Home (Shifnal, captain), Ben Lees (Shifnal), Luke Thornton (Shrewsbury), Sam Whitney (Bridgnorth), Sam Ellis (Wolverhampton), Ben Roberts (Shifnal).

Pictured: Sam Whitney will make his first appearance of the season for Shropshire in the opening NCCA Championship match against Wales National County.