Test Match Sofa
Warwicks want county title as added Abberley tribute
By Paul Bolton, County News Correspondent
Warwickshire want to be able to parade the LV= County Championship trophy as a tribute to the late Neal Abberley, their former batting coach, on Sunday September 9.
The county had hoped to win the title last year as a fitting tribute to Abberley, a former Warwickshire player before he became an influential coach, who died in August 2011 from a lung complaint.
They narrowly missed out to Lancashire on a tense final day of the season but look like claiming the title for the first time in eight years having bowled out Worcestershire for just 60 on the opening day of their match at New Road.
Warwickshire will win the title this week if they can secure batting bonus points and go on to beat Worcestershire, and their next match is against a side of their former players in the inaugural Neal Abberley Memorial Match at Knowle & Dorridge CC this Sunday.
As Warwickshire have already completed all their competitive home matches the Knowle & Dorridge fixture will be a chance for county supporters to honour heroes past and present and also to raise money for Neil Carter’s benefit and for the Warwickshire Old County Cricketers’ Association.
Warwickshire are likely to face a stiffer challenge than Worcestershire mustered at New Road as the former players’ team includes the likes of Dominic Ostler, David Hemp and Dougie Brown, who are still playing first team cricket in the Birmingham League, and other fierce competitors from the club’s successful recent past.
Brown, who is Warwickshire’s Second XI coach and Academy Director, will line up alongside Warwickshire Director of Cricket Ashley Giles, who will captain the old stars XI, and Graeme Welch, the county’s bowling coach.
They will be joined by Gladstone Small, Tim Munton, Neil Smith, Paul Smith, Asif Din and Michael Burns, all members of the Warwickshire squad that won county cricket’s first-ever treble in 1994.
Tony Frost, who played in Warwickshire’s County Championship-winning squad of 2004 and Geoff Humpage, who played in the 1989 NatWest Trophy-winning side, are also in the WOCCA team.
There is limited capacity at Knowle & Dorridge CC so spectators are advised to buy tickets, which are priced £5 for Adults, £3 for Concessions and £10 for a Family (2 Adults + 2 Concessions), from the Edgbaston Shop and Ticket Office.
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