Derbyshire 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:
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
Peter has been struggling with stress-related issues for some time and the Club, the PCA and Peter have agreed that he should be allowed to have time away from the professional game to focus on his recovery.
The Club will continue to work closely with the PCA in order to support Peter through this period and will review the situation once his recovery is complete.
Chief Executive Simon Storey said: "We are obviously disappointed that Peter won't be actively involved with final preparations for the new season. He is an exciting young cricketer with bags of potential and a promising future ahead of him.
Chesney Hughes says he is looking forward to returning to action this week when the squad jet off to Abu Dhabi for their pre-season tour.
The powerful all-rounder has spent the winter recovering from shoulder surgery he underwent at the close of the 2013 campaign.
The injury prevented him from bowling last season, but after five months of rehabilitation, the 23-year-old says he is now fully fit again and is looking forward to returning to action during Derbyshire’s trip to the United Arab Emirates.
“I’m really looking forward to the tour and getting back outside playing cricket,” Hughes said.
“It’s been a weird winter for me not playing cricket, but I am now fit again and ready to get back out there.
Geoff Miller OBE says he is honoured to be chosen as the next Derbyshire County Cricket Club President.
The Supervisory Board unanimously supported the nomination of the former Derbyshire Captain and England & Wales Cricket Board National Selector who will be officially ratified at the Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 26th March.
Chesterfield-born Miller played 254 first-class matches for Derbyshire between 1973 and 1990, claiming 888 wickets and scoring 12,027 runs, including two centuries, in 283 career first-class matches.
“It’s a great honour to be selected to be the next President,” Miller said.
“I have a lifelong passion for Derbyshire being born in Chesterfield and enjoying many great years here as a player. I am very privileged to be asked to hold this role.
Captain Wayne Madsen has thanked supporters, Members and local businesses for their generosity after the players raised over £6,500 at the Players’ Pre-Season Fundraising Lunch.
The players were so committed to finding funds for their trip to Abu Dhabi that they arranged their own fundraising event which took part in the County Ground Marquee yesterday.
The first-team squad were joined by over 200 guests who were treated to a glass of champagne on arrival, with compliments of Seven Restaurant and Café Bar, a three-course meal and amusing anecdote from guest speaker and Derbyshire legend Geoff Miller OBE.
Thanks to kind donations and the generosity of those in attendance, the players raised upwards of £6,500 for their pre-season tour which will now allow Graeme Welch’s men to prepare for the new season alongside New Zealand in the elite sporting environment of the state of the art Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium.
Derbyshire have confirmed that Geoff Miller OBE is to be voted as the Club’s President after their Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 26th March.
The Supervisory Board unanimously supported the nomination of the former Derbyshire Captain and England & Wales Cricket Board National Selector for the position.
Miller (pictured above on the left), who was born in Chesterfield, played 254 first-class matches for Derbyshire between 1973 and 1990 and was an integral member of the 1981 NatWest Trophy winning side.
The all-rounder took 888 wickets and scored 12,027 runs, including two centuries, in 283 career first-class matches.
Chairman Chris Grant says Derbyshire’s overriding off-field aim is to continually increase revenue in order to support investment on the field.
The Club recorded a profit of £3,395 for the financial year ending 31st December 2013 ;the Club’s third successive year of surplus.
“It’s been a tremendous effort off-the-field,” Grant said.
“We have achieved increases in ticket sales and Membership and support for the 1870 Business Club also continued to grow in 2013.
“Although we only had a surplus of £3,395, we were able to invest over £200,000 more than the previous year on the field and that was a superb effort.
Graeme Welch is hoping Derbyshire can create a winning habit starting with the pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi.
Derbyshire will compete in three fixtures against fellow first-class county Worcestershire and face international outfit New Zealand during their nine-day tour of Abu Dhabi, commencing Friday 7th March.
Elite Performance Director Welch hopes his side can make a winning start to 2014 after an extensive winter training regime.
“Winning becomes a habit so it would be ideal if we can start that in Abu Dhabi,” he said.
“The tour will also be a good chance for me and the new coaching team to have a look at the players in game situations.
“We will be able to learn more about how different individuals react and come the end of the tour, we will be in a better position to pick our first team for Leicestershire on 6th April.
Unprecedented numbers took part in this year's charity event hosted by Derbyshire County Cricket Club helping Derbyshire YMCA raise record amounts for their Safe Front Door campaign.
It was the second year that the Club has thrown open the gates of the County Ground in aid of the charity’s annual sponsored sleep-out on Friday 28th February.
The charity originally set a target of target of £19,000, but thanks to the generosity of local people and businesses, they have raised over £24,000.
Derbyshire Chief Executive, Simon Storey said: “We as a County Cricket Club located in the centre of Derby feel we have a sense of responsibility for the role we play within the community.
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