Twenty20 Cup: Is this our year?

So, here we are again, about to embark on our campaign to win our first ever Twenty20 Cup. The finals day is at Edgbaston this year so that give us even more incentive to get past that tricky quarter-final hurdle!

Twenty20 Cup: Is this our year?

The competition begins on June 1st with a repeat of last years final – Somerset v Hampshire. The Bears first game will be a tough one against Durham Dynamos at Chester-le-Street on Thursday.

It is a good chance for us to wipe the slate clean and forget the disappointments of the Championship defeats against Lancashire and Durham (twice), and our precarious position in the CB40 table after narrow loses to Hampshire and Northants!

Neil Carter and Ant Botha are possibly returning from injury for the first game – so thats great news to start the campaign with!

My XI (assuming Woakes not fit) would be:

Chopra
Carter
Porterfield
Troughton
Barker
Maddy
Clarke
Ambrose
Botha
Patel
Piolet

So how do my fellow Bears think we will do?

What should our first XI for T20 cricket be?

And who will be our star performers this year?

Over to you . . . .

Mark

LVCC Match Preview: Bears vs Pears Round 2

Tomorrow morning sees the beginning of the next match in Warwickshire’s hectic schedule of cricket!

It is only early May and we are playing the first return match of the season.  After beating Worcestershire comfortably – in the end – at New Road, it is now time to attempt to do the same at Edgbaston.

To the casual observer of West Midlands cricket this game should appear to be an easy fixture for the Bears.  The Pears will have the defeat at New Road still very fresh in their minds – and have lost all four of their County Championship matches so far this year.

Woakes destroyed the Pears on the final day at New Road but is injured for this encounter! Photo by Peter Lowe

However, let us not forget that we conceded a 1st innings lead of 175 to the Pears at New Road.  Only a fantastic double hundred by Chopra combined with fantastic bowling spells by Rankin at the end of the 1st innings, and Woakes at the end of the 2nd, brought us first back into the game and then in a position to win.

So the moral of the match at New Road is take nothing for granted – it should be a tough derby game.

Their will be two main talking points before the game begins.

One will of course be team selection – as it always is!

The other will be the pitch – after a truly dreadful pitch spoilt any chance of a decent test of skills between Warwickshire and Lancashire last week!

Let me deal with the pitch first.

The wicket used in the Championship game against Lancs was on the edge of the square.  It is expected that the one to be used this week will be more central.  The 2 Cb40 games played at Edgbaston so far this season have been fine for the batsmen.  Indeed the Leicestershire game was a run fest!  The last thing Warwickshire need is another pitch with uneven bounce and that turns square – we don’t even have an experienced frontline spinner!

Fingers crossed all will be well. After all, Warwickshire have the batsmen availiable to bat for 2 days should they win the toss and be given the choice.

This brings me on nicely to team selection.

Worcestershire have one main issue – who will replace Captain and opener Daryl Mitchell in the team.  Moeen Ali, former Warwickshire player, will take on the Captain’s role, but it is unclear who will fill the extra batting spot and how the batting order will line up!

Warwickshire have many selcetion issues.

First-choice keeper Ambrose faces a late fitness test.  It would be a boost for the Bears if he was fit to bolster the lower order batting.

Bears captain Jim Troughton also faces a late fitness test having already missed the Championship game against Lancashire and CB40 game at Northampton. This is not too hard an absence for the Bears to handle as they have Bell and Trott availiable and at the momment, so are not short of specialist batsmen – and Bell can also stand in as captain.

However, Warwickshire face much more serious selection issues when it comes to chosing the bowling attack for this match.

Warwickshire’s main spinner Ant Botha is out with a knee injury and the news this morning is that the Bears main new ball bowler Chris Woakes will be out for 2-3 weeks with shin splints!

These two injuries not only weaken the bowling but also reduce the batting strength of the lower order!

Therefore it would be reasonable to conclude that the Bears may find it a lot harder against the Pears this time around!

So, its over to you fellow Warwickshire fanatics! Which XI do you think will / should take to the field in the morning?

All sugestions welcome as always!

C’mon you Bears!

Mark

Bears facing CB40 bank holiday double at Edgbaston!

CB40

Can we retain the CB40 title?

After a busy couple of weeks in the LV County Championship the Bears take on Leicestershire tomorrow and Scotland on Monday in a bank holiday weekend double header!

Having lost our first CB40 tie in a thrilling game at The Rose Bowl it is important we do well in these next 2 games.

At least we are at Edgbaston!!!

I can see 2 wins in these matches . . . What does everyone else think???

Bears take on Durham in LVCC Div 1

Varun Chopra

More of the same please Mr Chopra!

Good morning fellow Bears!

Today Warwickshire begin their quest to make it 3 wins out of 3 in the County Championship!

Expect an unchanged side to the one that trounced Somerset and came back against Worcestershire despite conceding a 175 run lead after the first innings – and rightly so!

The weather forecast for the first day is not great but clear skys are predicted for day 2 so expect whoever wins the toss to have a bowl.

Good Luck Bears

Mark

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