Wessels Keen Not To
Underestimate Northants

Match Preview | 9th May 2014

After Nottinghamshire’s last LV= County Championship ended a draw on a batting-friendly Taunton, Nottinghamshire will look for a return to winning ways with the arrival of Northamptonshire to Trent Bridge. 

Riki Wessels has been in excellent form at the start of the season, and is relishing the opportunity to continue making runs at Trent Bridge after impressing against Lancashire in April.

“There are a few of us in good touch with the bat now,” he said. 

“Jaquesy has two fifties and that 150 against Somerset. Titch has two fifties, Samit has enjoyed two excellent scores, and Ready made 95.

“There are runs coming from across the order, and it’s a collective effort, and it would be nice to get Lumby involved now too.

“You’re looking at the top six to do the bulk of the work, and then Ready will come in and play the way he does, taking the game away from the opposition.” 

Northants are finding life in Division One tough, currently propping up the table after being promoted last season. After losing key players through injury in pre-season, Wessels was keen to avoid any notion of the fixture becoming a banana skin for Notts.

“We did quite well against them during our pre-season game, and they’re the new guys up in Division One so we’ll be looking to stamp our authority on them early in the contest and walk away with a win,” he said. 

You can’t take injuries for granted. They can still be a dangerous side, when you look like you you’re on top of them you can slip up and all of a sudden you’re in the position where you lose the game.

“If we go about what we need to do, bowl well in the right areas and bat for long periods, I do believe that we’re better than them.

“Northants were my first county, my first break into playing professional cricket, it’s a place I’ll always remember but coming to play at Trent Bridge, it’s quite easily forgotten.”

Nottinghamshire will be forced into making changes to the side who faced Somerset after losing Jake Ball for six weeks through a broken foot. Harry Gurney, who made his England debut against Scotland, has been told he is unavailable for selection, which allows Andre Adams and Luke Fletcher to return to the matchday squad.

Adams is now back available for selection following a return to fitness, while Fletcher was rested for the trip to Taunton.

“All the best to Jake on a quick recovery,” said Wessels.

“I’ve been there twice in the last two years myself, and being injured is tough, especially when it’s someone like Jake who has only just come into the side.

“But it gives other people opportunities, and this is a long season, there’s a lot of cricket to be played and there will inevitably be a few injuries along the way.”

Nottinghamshire squad to face Northamptonshire (from): Steven Mullaney, Phil Jaques, Michael Lumb, James Taylor, Samit Patel, Riki Wessels, Chris Read, Peter Siddle, Ajmal Shahzad, Andy Carter, Luke Fletcher, Andre Adams.

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