Thursday, 12 June 2014

Preview of Week Three of the Women's County Championship

Week Three of the Women's County Champs

Sunday 15th June is Week 3 of the Women's County Championship with just one round of games being played. Kent sit out the week in Division 1 and Staffs sit out in Division 2.

Division 1
Essex v Berkshire at Felsted School
Middlesex v Surrey at Edmonton CC
Warwickshire v Notts at Wellesbourne CC
Yorkshire v Sussex at Harrogate CC

Top of the table Sussex (on NRR) travel all the way to Harrogate for their clash with Yorkshire. They will be hoping that skipper Sarah Taylor is passed fit to play and will lead the side after sitting out a rain-soaked weekend two weeks ago. Yorkshire have their own injury worries with Dani Hazell unlikely to be in the starting line-up and Katherine Brunt already sidelined. This is a repeat of last year's Championship final, but Yorkshire have not had the best of starts this year, having been smashed by Kent and then dipping out to Surrey by just 7 runs, chasing 222. Lauren Winfield has been in good form with the bat, but she needs some support, and they will miss Hazell with the ball.
Surrey will look to keep their good start to the season going when they travel to Middlesex. Middlesex put in a decent performance against Kent in their only game of the season so far and this is likely to be a tight one. Surrey have wins against Warwickshire, Yorkshire and Essex under their belts, but are likely to find the Meatballs a stiffer test.
Notts will be looking to consign Warwickshire to their fourth defeat of the season after posting 248/5 against Sussex before the rain came. Danni Wyatt and Jenny Gunn have been in good form with the bat this season (although there seems some doubt over Gunn's fitness) and they may prove too strong for this young Warwickshire team, who have struggled so far this season.
Finally Essex host Berkshire. Essex are having a torrid time of things with three heavy defeats already this season. Berkshire have won the only game they have played, against Notts, and they look likely to remain unbeaten.

Division 2
Devon v Worcestershire at Sidmouth CC
Durham v Somerset at Durham City CC
Lancashire v Cheshire at Old Xaverians CC
Wales v Ireland at Newport CC

The three undefeated teams in the league - Devon, Lancashire and Wales will all be looking to maintain their clean starts to the 2014 season. Current table-toppers Devon are at home to Worcestershire, who suffered badly at the hands of Wales in the last round. Devon will be looking for a full 18 point win to keep them at the top.
Lancs take on local rivals Cheshire, who beat Staffs on the opening day of the season, but have subsequently lost to Worcestershire and Ireland. Provided Lancs don't collapse in a heap, as they nearly did against Durham in the last round, they should be comfortable winners.
Wales entertain Ireland, who have not made the start they would have liked to the season, finding runs, in particular, hard to come by. Wales have beaten Durham and Worcestershire quite comfortably, but their batting will be more thoroughly tested by the Irish bowlers. Could be a close one if Ireland bring their "A" game.
Finally Durham take on Somerset. Durham are 0/4, but Somerset have lost their last two games (to Lancs and Devon). It could be a nervy low-scoring game at Durham City CC. Either team needs one match-winning performance with the bat or the ball.


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