The second week of matches in the Specsavers County Championship begin on Thursday as some sides look to build on the start they got last week and others getting their campaigns underway All 18 counties are in action this week so there is plenty to get stuck into.
There are big matches in both divisions in the final set of games before the first break for the 50 over competition, which means each county will be eager to get a win under their belt to be in a good position when they competition returns.
The two promoted sides meet at Edgbaston this week in a big game especially for Kent. They missed a big opportunity to start their season with a win last week and need to get up and running here. The Bears begin their campaign in this match, as do the champions Surrey. They host an Essex side who took a bit of a beating last week. Hampshire picked up maximum points in beating Essex and will be hoping the Ageas Bowl is kind to them again when they take on Yorkshire with the other match seeing Nottinghamshire taking on Somerset at Trent Bridge.
There is no doubt about which the big match in Division Two is this week. It is the one between Middlesex and Lancashire at Lord’s where the home side will look to build on a lethargic draw last week. Leicestershire had a great win at Sussex last week and host Worcestershire who begin their campaign here. Derbyshire were another side who picked up a win in the first round of matches and they head to Bristol to take on Gloucestershire looking for a second victory on the season. Glamorgan host Northamptonshire and Cameron Bancroft begins life as Durham captain when his team host a Sussex outfit smarting from their loss to Leicestershire last week.
I’ll go with a couple of bets this week with sides who performed well taken to follow up this week. Hampshire are the first of those. Anyone who follows Hampshire will know that there has never been an issue with their bowling attack in this format and their success or otherwise boils down to how well they bat so it was very much a positive that they batted very well last week. To be fair Yorkshire batted well too but if Joe Root and Gary Ballance don’t score runs this Yorkshire side look a little flimsy and they look very weak with the ball at the minute even allowing for Duanne Olivier being in their ranks. If last week wasn’t a flash in the pan from Hampshire’s batsmen the 10/11 on them here looks big.
Northamptonshire had a bright start to the season dominating their draw against Middlesex and that performance should stand them in good stead here against a Glamorgan side starting out on their county season. I highlighted in my previews that I didn’t expect much of Glamorgan this season and just looking at their batting line up is a big concern. Northamptonshire bat deep and have plenty of bowling resources. I think they’ll get their first win here to take into what they hope will be a successful 50 over campaign.
Back Hampshire to beat Yorkshire for a 4/10 stake at 1.91 with Coral
PUSH – Back Northamptonshire to beat Glamorgan for a 4/10 stake at 1.75 with BetVictor