Wales will have their eye on events at Sidmouth where Devon take on Wiltshire during the final round of championship games as the race for promotion to Division looks set to go to the wire. Devon (53 pts) sit six points clear of Wales (47 pts) in second, with Wiltshire (39 pts) still able to usurp both teams above them with a win themselves.
To make the equation as simple as possible, Wales need to take care of business as they travel to Truro to take on Cornwall who cannot mathematically go up. If they do that, and Devon fail to beat Wiltshire then Wales can look forward to life in Division 1 and their best placed finish in the three day championship since 2013.
CAPTION (Carl Robertson Photos): Connor Brown batting during Wales victory against Wiltshire last game.
Beating Cornwall will not be an easy task if previous meeting are anything to go by – 16 draws have occurred between the two sides in the past with Wales only triumphing four times to Cornwall’s six. With Glamorgan 2nd XI also having a four day game themselves this week, coupled with some injuries and absentees the selectors have again been forced into making a number of changes.
Out go talisman Brad Wadlan and Todd Wilcox (both unavailable) from the victory against Wiltshire earlier in the month along Owen Reilly. Harry Friend is on study leave, Sam Jardine remains doubtful for red ball cricket with injury and the Glamorgan academy duo of Callum Nicholls and Ben Kellaway are on 2nd team duty. The in-form Lorenzo Machado and Steve Reingold are unavailable also.
In come batter Morgan Bevans who sustained a freak injury in the warm up last game alongside Muji Ilyas for a first championship appearance of the season. Two debuts are handed to Wales U18 and Carmarthen Wanderers pacer Will Moore – who was included in the matchday squad against Glamorgan a few weeks ago – and Cameron Hemp. 20 year old Hemp, son of former Glamorgan cricketer David, has been playing club cricket for Swansea this season as well as first grade cricket in the Victorian Premier League for Prahran, Australia. The Birmingham born left hander fills one of the vacant batting positions.
CAPTION: Cameron Hemp batting for Swansea - he will make a first Wales NC appearance against Cornwall.
Aneurin Norman, who is still vying for his 100th championship wicket keeps his place in the XI from Panteg whilst assistant player/coach Greg Smith (who plays his club cricket for Penzance) will line up against his former county for the first time since donning Welsh colours. Smith’s classy 71 in addition to Connor Brown’s 87 was instrumental in taking Wales close to Wiltshire’s target of 287 at Panteg before Sam Pearce’s swashbuckling 79 from 46 balls saw Wales home.
Cornwall look set to feature Chris Gibson who will be familiar to Wales having played his club cricket at Swansea over the last few seasons. Former Warwickshire and Leicestershire staffer Ateeq Javid is also sure to be involved as is the dangerous Christian Purchase who single handedly plucked victory from the jaws of defeat against Shropshire with a 74 ball century.
CAPTION (Carl Robertson Photos): Aneurin Norman could become the third bowler in Welsh history to take 100 championship wickets.
Play at Truro commences from 11am on Sunday and admittance is free of charge for spectators.
Wales NC squad from: TD Phillips (Cardiff), MJ Bevans (Newport), CR Brown (Lansdown), GM Smith (Penzance), CH Hemp (Swansea), MM Ilyas (Newport), CL Herring*+ (Pontarddulais), SJ Pearce (Warminster), AJ Norman (Mumbles), O Subhan (Cardiff), WS Moore (Carmarthen Wanderers).