Saturday, June 22nd, 2024

Worcestershire v Surrey | Squad & Preview

Tom Taylor and Shoaib Bashir are in line to make their Vitality County Championship debut for Worcestershire against leaders and champions Surrey at Visit Worcestershire New Road beginning on Sunday (11am start).

Taylor is fit after missing the initial block of Championship matches with shoulder and knee injuries following a collision during a Second Eleven match with paceman Ben Gibbon.

The all-rounder, who signed a four year contract after leaving Northamptonshire at the end of last season, has been an ever present member of the side in the Vitality Blast.

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Head Coach, Alan Richardson, said: “Tommy is certainly going to be in contention. We now believe he has got the volume of overs up.

“He has managed to play some cricket outside our T20 stuff to try and get his overs up.

“It will be nice to have Tommy on board with us in red ball cricket as well. I know that he has found it very frustrating not getting those chances through injury at the start of the season.

“But we always said we wanted to treat him as carefully as we could rather than rush him back for the away Surrey game or home Notts game….it felt like he just needed some more overs.

“He’s got a decent volume of overs behind him now so he will be in contention for Sunday.”

Bashir also signed for five Vitality Blast matches on loan from Somerset but the home Surrey game was always a priority in which to feature for England spinner.

Richardson said: “I was lucky enough to watch him play in India for England and knew he was a good performer.

“We did our due diligence, and spoke to people that know him as well, and he came back with glowing references in terms of his quality on the field but also his character off it.

“We thought there might be a couple of opportunities with T20 cricket, and he’s had those, but it was always geared towards that Championship game where we felt like we needed some spin and again just to cover our bowling options as much as possible.

“I thought he equipped himself very well, and bowled very well against us at Kidderminster earlier in the season.

“He probably deserved more than the returns he got, but bowled very well and put pressure on us with the ball in not only containing the run rate but also creating chances as well.

“We have to keep reminding himself he is still only 20, and learning the ropes himself, so it is another good opportunity for an excellent young cricketer to be exposed to first class cricket.”

Ben Allison is set to make his second ‘debut’ for Worcestershire on loan from Essex having played for the county towards the end of last season.

Richardson said: “Unfortunately we’ve got ourselves into a position where we are a little bit down to the bare bones with our seamers and trying to look after them as much as possible.

“An opportunity came around with Ben who has not been able to force his way into the Essex side so he is available.

“It is nice to have had the experience of Ben before and him having the experience of being with us and we both enjoyed it so we are going to get a quality performer in who knows the lads and the lads know him.

“What we get with Ben, and what attracts us to him, is not only is he a good performer with the ball but he is very good in the field, a good catcher who can field in the slips, and also very handy with the bat.

“He is an evolving cricketer in terms of that, all three skill sets he can get even better, but he has got a very good base in all three of those.

“He just needs I guess a bit more exposure and a bit more opportunity.”

Worcestershire Squad

2 Jake Libby
6 Matthew Waite
7 Ed Pollock
9 Gareth Roderick (w)
12 Tom Taylor
15 Brett D’Oliveira ©
20 Nathan Smith
27 Kashif Ali
31 Shoaib Bashir
54 Adam Hose
61 Adam Finch
65 Ben Allison
77 Ethan Brookes
88 Rob Jones