Given Chris Adams' interview (here) I'm not sure how much this is going to add, the coach more or less picks his side for tomorrow's game, but for what its worth, here are my thoughts.
The headlines have to be the earlier-than-expected return for Ramprakash and the right-on-cue return for Chris Tremlett, as well as the inclusion, at long last, of Jason Roy in a four day squad in 2011. A 13 man squad has been named, and Adams seemingly confirms his order in the interview above, which leaves us with:
12th men: Linley, Schofield.
In parts that is harsh on Linley who bowled excellently over the weekend (though poorly at Lord's) and Schofield who is in great form with the bat, but you can't look at those five bowlers and leave one of them out. Batty at seven is probably a spot higher than ideal but he is in good form and Arafat can give us a few runs as well if the mood takes him. Arafat's form with the ball has been a bit of a mystery but after the CB40 games he's hopefully on the up. The question of who takes the new ball is an interesting one, I would be tempted by Dernbach and Arafat first up with Tremlett and Meaker to play that 'enforcer' role that we've lacked for the most part so far. To be faced with 25-odd overs of those four first up is not a pleasant prospect for any side, and you aren't going to get much off Gareth Batty either.
As for the openers, I had anticipated one of Brown or Wilson may be dropped but not both. Having said that, neither have looked in especially good nick in their last few innings. Some time in the 2nd XI will hopefully see them come back stronger. The captain and Roy to open is a huge gamble, as Adams candidly confesses in the interview "we could be 50-0 off five or 10-2, we know that", so they are obviously going to be given license to attack (though hopefully not recklessly) and that's as it should be. Credit should go to Hamilton-Brown who apparently volunteered to open the innings when he knew the side was in a fix.
Leicestershire are not a side to be taken lightly, they absolutely clobbered us at the Oval last year by an innings and plenty. This year they've drawn with and lost to Derbyshire, and comfortably beaten Glamorgan. Will Jefferson at the top of the order is in great form and James Taylor is just absurdly talented for 21 years old. Claude Henderson keeps churning out the overs and the wickets (he got six-for against us last year), Jigar Naik is a good bowler and in Hoggard and Buck they have two excellent seamers.
On paper, and on form, this is probably the 11 best cricketers at Surrey, but it will come down to how they blend as a side once they cross the line. There looks to be a good mix of youth and experience, if this side can't get a sniff of beating Leicestershire, I don't know what I'll do.
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