Derbyshire will face international outfit New Zealand on Wednesday 12th March as part of their pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi.
The itinerary for the trip to the United Arab Emirates has now been confirmed, with the squad flying out on Friday 7th March spending nine days based at the state of the art Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium before returning on Sunday 16th March.
Derbyshire will compete in three fixtures against fellow first-class county Worcestershire, beginning with a 50-over fixture on Sunday 9th March and concluding with a two-day match starting on Thursday 13th March.
The fixtures against Worcestershire will bookend a Twenty20 fixture with the Kiwis, who have chosen Abu Dhabi as their base ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.
Fourth-year Academy member Will Davis says the new elite structure will give young cricketers the best opportunity to fulfil their potential.
Derbyshire recently announced a new coaching team in which Elite Performance Coaches Stephen Stubbings and AJ Harris [pictured above] will both have a special focus on Academy development.
Davis says training under the new structure is going well as the Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with University of Derby member attempts to bounce back from an injury-hit 2013.
“Training has been going really well. It’s probably the best winter I have had," Davis said.
“I’ve been working hard in the gym and the skilled-based training with Stubbo and AJ has been going well. So hopefully it can help me to have a good season.
Over the next 15 days, the Club will auction unique pieces of Derbyshire memorabilia - including a 2012 LV= County Championship Division Two winner's medal – for supporters to place their bids.
Each day we will be offering a different piece of Derbyshire history for supporters to get their hands on – including signed shirts, signed bats and match-worn memorabilia.
To bid on an item, simply follow Derbyshire on Twitter (@DerbyshireCCC) and send us a tweet with your bid for that day’s item.
The highest bidder at 9.00pm every day will win. The Club will then send a direct message to the lucky winner with further information.
Derbyshire Members can receive access to an exclusive priority ticket window for Investec Test match tickets at The Ageas Bowl.
We're offering our Members a chance to purchase tickets BEFORE they go on sale to the general public for England’s Test match with India on Sunday 27th July at the Ageas Bowl.
All new and current Members will gain access to this exclusive priority ticket window for Test match tickets.
HOW TO BOOK
Graeme Welch chats to derbyshireccc.com about the last seven days at the County Ground as John Sadler begins his first week as Batting Coach and the squad prepare for their first yoga session on Friday.
Graeme Welch says he has been pleased with the squad’s work ethic as preparations for the new campaign intensify.
This week has seen the introduction of competitive batting and bowling sessions inside the cricket hall at the County Ground as the squad practice match situations in preparation for the new season.
Elite Performance Coach John Sadler has also spent his first seven days with the squad, observing and adding his input during training sessions.
“John Sadler has come in this week. He knows a few of the lads but not in a coaching capacity so he is just observing and trying to get to know them,” Welch said.
Pace bowler Mark Footitt is hoping to build on his successful 2013 campaign and become a mainstay in all forms this summer.
The left-arm fast-bowler enjoyed the best season of his career in 2013 taking 42 first-class wickets and a further 15 dismissals in the limited-overs forms of the game.
His 6 for 53 against champions Durham and 5 for 28 against Scotland were career-best performances in First Class and List A cricket respectively.
Footitt is now hoping a good winter programme will give him the confidence to kick on this summer as Derbyshire push for honours across all three domestic competitions.
“I’m looking forward to the new season and I want to build on what I did last year,” he said.
Derbyshire County Cricket Club has announced its Second XI fixtures for the 2014 season – including two matches at the County Ground.
Derbyshire will begin the season by hosting Leicestershire in a four-day friendly on Monday 7th April, before entertaining Worcestershire in their first competitive fixture on Tuesday 29th April.
The County Ground, Derby, will host two Second XI fixtures - a one-day game on Monday 11th August and a Championship fixture starting on Tuesday 12th August both against Warwickshire.
Elite Performance Coach John Sadler will take over the Second XI coaching duties this summer after joining the Club earlier this month as part of the new elite coaching team.
All Second XI venues and start times will be confirmed in the coming months.
Graeme Welch says the current crop of Derbyshire Academy graduates are amongst the best he’s worked with.
The new Elite Performance Director has now been in the job four weeks and he has noticed exceptional potential in those produced by the Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby.
Welch worked with England internationals Chris Woakes and Boyd Rankin at Warwickshire. But he believes the talent at the County Ground has the potential to surpass his former county.
“We’ve got some talented young players in the squad and I’ve been very impressed with the Academy graduates on the staff,” Welch said.
“There’s probably more talent here than what I had to work with at Warwickshire.
ECB coaching boss Gordon Lord says the new Elite Cricket Performance structure could lead to significant improvements in Derbyshire’s on-field performances.
The governing body’s Head of Elite Coach Development, who spearheaded their own similar elite coaching model, believes the county will also realise its ambition to produce England cricketers.
He said: “The way Derbyshire have put together a team of elite coaches to work across the pathway is extremely exciting,” Lord said.
“It’s also very encouraging in terms the way Derbyshire County Cricket Club and the Derbyshire Cricket Board will develop talent in the future. This is the most systematic way I’ve seen that will give young players the best possible opportunity to break into the first-class game.
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