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Elstone: I want to be a threat with bat and ball

ScottElstoneNew recruit Scott Elstone says he can have an impact in all formats with both bat and ball in 2014.

The former Nottinghamshire all-rounder recently signed an incremental contract for the upcoming season after enjoying a successful trial period with the Club in 2013.

The 23-year-old, who made is List A debut for Derbyshire in August against Essex, has since been training with the rest of the playing squad in Derby as preparations begin for the new season.

He hopes a winter with the Derbyshire coaching staff will help him break into Karl Krikken's side as the Club look to compete on all fronts next summer.

“Watching the lads play in Division One last year was a big thing. I would love us get back into the First Division in the near future,” Elstone said.

“I’ll be doing everything I can, as I’m sure my team-mates will too, to get us back in the top flight.

Read more: Elstone: I want to be a threat with bat and ball

2014 Fixture list announcement date confirmed

Fixtures2014The County fixture list for the 2014 season will be announced on Tuesday 26th November – and supporters can find out first who Derbyshire will be facing next season at derbyshireccc.com.

Defeat on the final day of the 2013 season confirmed relegation for Karl Krikken’s side who, despite claiming three LV= County Championship Division One victories in the Club’s first year back in the top flight, will ply their trade in the second tier next season.

The squad reported back for the start of their pre-season training programme last week and will be at the County Ground five-days-a-week throughout the winter to ensure they are physically prepared for the new season.

Captain Wayne Madsen will once again lead the side after the 29-year-old recently signed a new three-year contract committing him to the Club until the end of the 2016 season.

Madsen will join Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who enters the second year of his deal with the Club, and paceman Mark Footitt, who put pen-to-paper on a new contract keeping him at county until the end of the 2015 season, in the Derbyshire line-up for 2014.

Read more: 2014 Fixture list announcement date confirmed

Home-grown paceman signs for 2014

MattHigginbottomMatt Higginbottom has signed an incremental contract with Derbyshire County Cricket Club for the 2014 season.

The Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby graduate made his LV= County Championship debut in Derbyshire’s nine-wicket victory over Sussex in August.

In three Division One appearances, the 23-year-old claimed 10 wickets at a shade over 35, including season-best figures of 3-59 in the win over Middlesex at the County Ground.

He was also named Second XI Player of the Year after claiming 32 wickets at 20.50 apiece in all competitions for Stephen Stubbings’ side.

Higginbottom joins fellow Academy graduate Ben Slater in signing an incremental contract for the upcoming campaign.

Read more: Home-grown paceman signs for 2014

The importance of team chemistry | By Tony Palladino

TonyPalladinoPaceman Tony Palladino's latest column for The Cricketer Magazine, as he takes a look at what team chemistry really means and how it could have a major say in the Ashes.

The Ashes is soon to begin and once again England are favourites to emerge victorious. Why is this? Well, not only have they won the last three series but, to put it more bluntly, they are the best team. From top to bottom England are superior and deserve to be odds-on with the bookies. The Aussies may as well give up now because obviously England will win. The best team always wins, doesn't it?

Luckily for us in sport this is not always the case. It would be boring to watch a sporting event knowing that the favourite was going to win. So why does the underdog sometimes pull through and win? I believe some answers can be found by looking at a team’s chemistry and how they gel together.

Australia need to be cohesive this winter if they are going to beat England. By this I mean they need to play together, work together and fight together. All pulling in the same direction. No egos or prima donnas. If they can do this and harness the home crowd’s buzz, it might give them that extra push they need to cause an upset. 

It's well documented that Shane Watson is not well liked by Michael Clarke but is always going to play when fit because he is one of Australia’s best players. As a coach should you drop your best players if you think it's the best for the team? It’s a decision I'm sure many Premier League football managers have to go through week in and week out.

Read more: The importance of team chemistry | By Tony Palladino

Shivnarine Chanderpaul set for 150th Test

ShivnarineChanderpaulOn November 14th 2013, Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar will play his highly-publicised 200th and final Test match.

But tomorrow’s date will also hold a certain significance for one softly spoken, obdurate and hard-working batsman currently on the Derbyshire staff.

West Indies great Shivnarine Chanderpaul will compete in his 150th Test and the world will be watching.

When the second and final Test comes to a scheduled close on Monday, Chanderpaul and Jacques Kallis will be the last two cricketers who began their careers in the 1990s still competing on the international stage.

Shiv has enjoyed a career spanning over 19 years and is a member of the illustrious 10,000 Test runs club – and he’s still going.

“It’s not every day that someone gets to their 150th Test match,” he said.  “It’s a milestone for me and I’m looking forward to it.

Read more: Shivnarine Chanderpaul set for 150th Test

ECB announce rule changes for 2014

RuleChangesThe ECB has announced a series of changes to its rules and regulations for first-class cricket from the start of the 2014 season.

This will include the wider use of the Super Over concept, the advent of coloured crease markings and a new 60-second cut off time for incoming batsmen in Domestic Twenty20 cricket.

The key changes, which were proposed by the ECB’s Cricket Committee and approved by the ECB Board yesterday, will also see the ECB adopt a number of regulations which are currently used at international level into its three main domestic competitions.

Commenting on the changes, ECB Chief Executive David Collier said: “These changes are designed to make our domestic game even more spectator and viewer-friendly as well as bring the county game into line with rule changes which have been successfully implemented at international level by the ICC.

"They will come into force along with the new county schedule next season and are the product of extensive consultation and discussion with all our key stakeholders in the domestic game.”

Read more: ECB announce rule changes for 2014

Palladino hoping for injury-free 2014

TonyPalladinoPace bowler Tony Palladino says he’ll be working hard to put last season’s injury worries behind him and he hopes for a productive 2014 campaign.

The 30-year-old missed the majority of the 2013 season with a side strain, but returned to Karl Krikken’s side for the final three fixtures picking up 15 wickets at a shade over 17.

Palladino insists he will be working harder than anyone this winter to ensure he remains on the field for the entire 2014 summer as Derbyshire aim for an immediate return to the top flight.

“I’m working hard to make sure I get a full season in the bank next year and that’s what I am planning to do,” he said.

“I had a side strain towards the start of last season. It’s something that can happen to any bowler really. There can be a lot of strain on the body but it’s our job and I certainly wouldn’t chance it for the world.

Read more: Palladino hoping for injury-free 2014

Poynton: Toughest first week we've had

TomPoyntonWicketkeeper Tom Poynton says the first week back has been his hardest ever, but insists the squad will be better off from it come April.

The playing squad reported back for the start of their winter training schedule last week and have been put through their paces by Strength and Conditioning Coach Jamie Tallent.

Poynton is beginning his seventh pre-season programme with the first team after graduating from the Cricket Derbyshire Academy in partnership with the University of Derby in 2008.

“I’m very stiff and sore at the moment. It's been one of the toughest first weeks we've had,” the 23-year-old said after completing the first week back.

“We’re all battling through it, but this is the stuff you love if it’s going to come good in April.

“We currently have three or four cardio days a week as well as gym work which has been specifically designed for each individual player.

Read more: Poynton: Toughest first week we've had

Talks held over County Ground development

TheCountyGroundDerbyshire County Cricket Club is pressing forward with funding applications for a £3.65 million redevelopment of the County Ground following further talks with Derby City Council.

Representatives from the Club and the Council met to review potential options for ground development and established that the only viable option within the City of Derby is the redevelopment of the County Ground.

Whilst the Club has still not ruled out a move to an alternative location elsewhere in the county, they will now pursue additional funds to augment their existing redevelopment budgets.

The Club has already gained £1.7 million in ECB funding and is now looking to secure an additional £1.9 million in loan and grant funding to secure the development of a 7,000 capacity outdoor amphitheatre capable of hosting international cricket, concerts and community events.

Read more: Talks held over County Ground development

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