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Derbyshire to face Worcestershire in tour opener

abudhabiDerbyshire will begin their pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi with a 50-over clash versus Worcestershire tomorrow (Sunday); 6.30am start (UK time).

The squad flew to the United Arab Emirates earlier today and will spend nine days based at the state of the art Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium.

They will compete in fixtures against the Pears and international outfit New Zealand, who have chosen Abu Dhabi as their base ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in Bangladesh, before returning on Sunday 16th March.

Following four consecutive visits to Barbados, Derbyshire were originally planning to spend their entire pre-season in the UK.

However, following the introduction of the new Elite Performance model, Elite Performance Director Graeme Welch and his team are keen to ensure they are ready to hit the ground running when the new season commences in April.

Derbyshire will compete in three fixtures against fellow first-class county Worcestershire, beginning with a 50-over fixture on Sunday and concluding with a two-day match starting on Thursday 13th March. 

The fixtures against Daryl Mitchell’s side will bookend to days of Twenty20 cricket featuring Derbyshire, the Kiwis, Worcestershire and an ECB XI with Welch’s men facing Brendan McCullum and co on Wednesday 12th March.

As well as the matches themselves, Abu Dhabi will also provide a warm weather backdrop to the intense regime of Elite Performance Training that is already preparing Derbyshire for the 2014 campaign.

Derbyshire (from): W Madsen (capt), B Godleman, S Moore, W Durston, M Footitt, M Turner, S Elstone, T Groenewald, J Clare, P Borrington, A Hughes, M Higginbottom, D Wainwright, C Hughes, T Poynton, R Johnson, B Slater, T Knight, T Palladino, B Cotton.

Worcestershire (from): D K H Mitchell (capt), G M Andrew, G Cessford, S H Choudhry, O B Cox, T C Fell, N L Harrison, A Hepburn, A N Kervezee, T Kohler-Cadmore, J Leach, C A J Morris, M G Pardoe, C J Russell, J D Shantry, R A Whiteley, B L D'Oliveira.

Abu Dhabi Itinerary in full:

Date                                                    Event
Friday 7th March                                  Fly out
Saturday 8th                                        Practice
Sunday 9th                                          50 over match v Worcestershire
Monday 10th                                       Practice
Tuesday 11th                                       Practice followed by T20 v Worcestershire
Wednesday 12th                                  T20 v New Zealand & T20 v Worcestershire/ECB Select XI
Thursday 13th                                      2 day game v Worcestershire
Friday 14th                                           2 day game v Worcestershire
Saturday 15th                                       Practice
Sunday 16th                                         Fly home


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