Graeme Welch has named a 12-man squad for Derbyshire’s two-day friendly against Warwickshire at the 3aaa County Ground, starting tomorrow at 11am.
Stephen Moore - who signed a two-year deal with the county in January - will make his first home appearance in a Derbyshire shirt, while Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby graduate Ben Cotton will make his first appearance for the first team at the 3aaa County Ground.
The squad to face Warwickshire also includes former Nottinghamshire Academy member Adam Shepherd who is on trial with the Club after impressing in the Second XI last season.
Elite Performance Director Welch said: “Our pre-season has been mapped out quite well. We had a very good behind-closed-doors match played between ourselves as a squad, which was a great exercise.
Graeme Welch says the two-day friendly against Warwickshire will be a good exercise to see exactly where the squad are at ahead of the new season.
Derbyshire conclude their preparations for the 2014 season with a two-day fixture against the 2012 LV= County Champions starting on Thursday 27th March at the 3aaa County Ground; 11am start.
The game will be Derbyshire's final warm-up fixture before the new season begins with a three-day first-class match against Durham MCCU on Tuesday 1st April; also at the 3aaa County Ground.
Entry to both fixtures are FREE as supporters get a chance to see the squad on home soil for the first time in 2014.
The AGM of Derbyshire CCC, on Wednesday 26th March – 7.30pm, will be attended by the entire playing and coaching staff.
Members are invited to stay for Post-AGM light refreshments complete with the opportunity to mingle with the squad, the elite performance coaching team, the Regional Reps and the Supervisory Board.
All voting members of the Club are invited to attend the AGM with a voting member defined as follows:
Chief Executive Simon Storey says the ground-breaking partnership with Aspire Achieve Advance Ltd (3aaa) will help Derbyshire compete for on-the-field honours.
Derbyshire and 3aaa have agreed a three-year partnership which will see 3aaa become the Club's first ever stadium naming rights partner.
The six-figure deal is the largest commercial partnership in the history of the Club and will see the ground renamed as the 3aaa County Ground as well as 3aaa becoming Derbyshire's NatWest T20 Blast shirt sponsor.
Storey says it is a fantastic deal for both parties which will allow Derbyshire to continue their improved investment on-the-field.
“The progress we have been making on and off-the-field over the last two years has been there for all to see and this is the next stage,” he said.
“This is all about our five-year plan to provide sustainable first-class cricket in the first division. It’s a sense of reinforcing the progress we are already making.
Derbyshire CCC and 3aaa (Aspire Achieve Advance Ltd) have agreed a three-year partnership which will see 3aaa, one of the UK’s leading national training providers for Apprenticeships, become the Club's first ever stadium naming rights partner.
The six-figure deal is the largest commercial partnership in the history of the Club. It will see the ground renamed as The 3aaa County Ground (pronounced verbally as The 3a County Ground) as well as 3aaa becoming Derbyshire's NatWest T20 Blast shirt sponsor.
Also, as part of the ground-breaking partnership, 3aaa will provide four high quality, industry experienced apprentices to join Derbyshire's off-field commercial and administration team.
Derbyshire CCC Chief Executive Simon Storey said: "We are absolutely delighted to be entering this innovative partnership with 3aaa.
"Our partnership with 3aaa will give their business nationwide exposure, supporting their continued growth as one of the country's leading apprenticeship providers.
Immediately after each home game of Royal London One-Day Cup and NatWest T20 Blast cricket, the players will sign autographs in the Autograph Zone adjacent to the Lund Pavilion.
A specific autograph area, situated near to the Lund Pavilion, will be designated – meanwhile – at all home LV= County Championship matches.
As well as being able to obtain autographs, supporters can gain access on the outfield during intervals and after the close of play at all home Royal London One-Day Cup and LV= County Championship fixtures this summer.
Graeme Welch says he has seen enough during Derbyshire’s pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi to make him excited about the Club’s prospects for the new campaign.
Derbyshire enjoyed a successful tour of the United Arab Emirates which saw comfortable one-day victories over Worcestershire and a narrow defeat to international outfit New Zealand.
The squad have now returned to Derby for the final stages of their preparation for the 2014 season and Elite Performance Director Welch says his players will be raring to go.
"I learned a lot about the players," Welch said on the squad’s return from Abu Dhabi. "We as a management team learned a lot about them. We discussed individuals a lot and they all just seem hungry and ready to go.
"The way the players batted, bowled and fielded in Abu Dhabi, you can see they want the season to come now.
"The Twenty20 against New Zealand and the two-dayer against Worcestershire took it out of them a bit but that's to be expected. The New Zealand game was high intensity and in the two-dayer you are spending 90 overs in the field but you've got to get used to that and we will.
ECB coaching boss Gordon Lord says under the new Elite Cricket Performance structure, Derbyshire can produce future England players.
The governing bodys Head of Elite Coach Development, who spearheaded a similar elite coaching model for the national team, believes the structure will also bring improved performances for Derbyshire on the field.
"I think there is a very real possibility that Derbyshire can produce future England players with the structure in place," Lord said.
"I think the system which has been put in place at Derbyshire is one that really suits the county.
"Coaching moving forward has been increasingly aware of the importance of getting very highly qualified and skilled coaches working at all stages of the player pathway.
Ben Slater and Paul Borrington both hit half-centuries as Derbyshire drew with Worcestershire in their final fixture in Abu Dhabi.
Slater (pictured) and Borrington shared a 58-run stand before both retired after reaching 50 on the final day of the two-day friendly against their LV= County Championship Division Two counterparts.
A number of batsman gained valuable time in the middle, with Jonathan Clare (35 not out) and Richard Johnson (15 not out) sharing an unbeaten 41-run stand to end the day with Derbyshire 227-8.
On a windy morning, and with partial sand storms covering the surrounding areas, Derbyshire struggled in the opening session falling to 75-3 at lunch taken after 26 overs.
Stephen Moore, making his first red-ball outing for Derbyshire since signing a two-year deal with the Club in December, started positively but was bowled by Andrew for 10.
Captain Wayne Madsen joined opener Borrington in the middle and together they added 43 in 18 overs to move Derbyshire onto 65-1. Madsen, however, was second man out, trapped lbw by Choudhry for 22.
Borrington and Slater regrouped and produced an unbeaten partnership worth 58 runs in 19 overs after lunch.
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