Wales will welcome back some familiar faces in their initial squad of 14 as they prepare to face Devon in the NCCA Championship on Sunday at Sandford.
Former Glamorgan staffer Kieran Bull returns to the side after reconnecting with cricket this summer for Northants 2nd XI. 26 year old Bull, from Haverfordwest enjoyed six years as a professional before being released last year. Bull’s last appearance for Wales NC was back in 2013 and he has collected 16 wickets at an average of just under 20 over the two seasons he played between 2012-2013.
Also named in the squad is Swansea batter Steffan Roberts. The explosive right hander has been part of the selector’s plans all year, and was due to be involved in the rained off pre-season games back in May. With the success of the team so far this year, opportunities have been few and far between but Roberts has continued to score heavily in league and cup cricket in South Wales. It remains to be seen if he makes the final XI.
PHOTO: Steffan Roberts returns to the squad.
Deputy skipper Andrew Gorvin and Steven Reingold are not included – both are expected to be involved in Glamorgan’s Royal London One Day Cup squads over the next week. Reingold made his List-A and Glamorgan debut earlier today against Warwickshire, after impressing with 44 against Glamorgan during the showcase game earlier this week. Muji Ilyas remains in contention to provide another batting/spin option, and Greg Holmes is fit to be included despite suffering a dislocated finger in the week at Sophia Gardens.
It’s been one of the busier months on record for Wales as they continued their fine white ball run this year, following up last Sunday’s quarter final win against Herefordshire with an outstanding performance against Glamorgan on Tuesday. They won’t have much time to rest after this game either as Shropshire are due at Abergavenny on Sunday 1st August for another championship game.
PHOTO: Andrew Gorvin misses his first game of the year due to Glamorgan commitments.
Persistent rain prevented Wales from getting off to a winning start in the championship, after they enjoyed the better of a day and a half against Cornwall. They will be hoping to gain some ground on Herefordshire who trounced Devon by 10 wickets in the first round of fixtures. Veteran seamer Aneurin Norman remains four wickets away from reaching 100 championship wickets.
Former Glamorgan and Wales seamer Kazi Szymanski is set to line up against his former team, having transferred back to Devon this week. Syzmanski, who still plays in South Wales for Swansea hasn’t been able to break into the selector’s plans thus far this year and remains keen to pursue other available opportunities.
Devon feature former Kent and Somerset all rounder Callum Haggett in their side, as well as Cricket Wales Head of Talent Pathway Matt Thompson, who skippers in the absence of the inured Jamie Stephens. Wales’ last visit to Sandford was in 2018 and remains one of the great escapes in recent memory. Devon amassed a whopping 476-9 after centuries from Tom Lammonby and Zach Bess. Wales crumbled to 182 all out and another Lammonby hundred in the second innings left them with a mammoth task. 126 overs and 456 runs later a draw was confirmed with one wicket left. A magnificent effort with centuries from Umar Malik (105) and skipper at the time Brad Wadlan (118*).
Wales NC from: SJ Pearce* (Bridgend), MJ Bevans (Newport), CR Brown, OMD Kolk (both Lansdown), GC Holmes (Cardiff), CL Herring+ (Pontarddulais), TR Bevan (St Fagans), AJ Norman (Mumbles), TD Phillips (Cardiff), RD Edwards (Port Talbot), KA Bull, TL Jones (Bridgend), MM Ilyas (Newport), SH Roberts (Swansea).
Devon from: MW Thompson*+, MC Golding, CJ Haggett, BA Beaumont, JHG Degg, EH Hamilton, SO Read, MP Skeemer, A Small, F Sabir, KB Szymanski, EWO Middleton, JD Horler.