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Report from Allan Smith - 260619

Staffordshire’s cricketers go into Sunday’s Unicorns Trophy quarter-final match against Cambridgeshire at Knypersley Cricket Club knowing that this competition is probably their best chance of silverware this season. Staffs have reached the last eight of the competition with comfortable away victories over Hertfordshire and Herefordshire while Cambridgeshire have played just the one game, defeating Norfolk in a close fought encounter. Staffs will be aware of the dangers the opposition provide as they try to stake a claim to reach the last four where the prize is a trip to play either Lincolnshire or Cumberland on Sunday 11th August.    


For the crucial encounter Staffs have included West Bromwich Dartmouth Shozair Ali for the first time in a 13 man squad in place of Brinder Phagura who has decided he doesn’t want to play for the County anymore. Also included is Warwickshire’s Alex Mellor and Sam Kelsall, who has recovered from a broken finger which has kept him out of the last few Staffs games. 


Included for the first time in the Trophy squad this year is left-arm spinner Paul Byrne who made his first appearance of the season for the County in the rain affected championship draw against Suffolk last weekend. For the game at Knypersley, skipper Kadeer Ali can call on the stalwarts of recent years in Peter Wilshaw, Tim Maxfield, Michael Hill and Dan Richardson while also seeking a place in the starting eleven are this seasons newcomers James Cox, wicket-keeper Spencer Byatt, Matthew Morris and Richard Williams.


Captained by James Williams, Cambridgeshire are able to call on the experience of all-rounder Waqas Hussain who has joined them this year after being a member of the highly successful Berkshire side which has been all conquering in recent seasons.     `
The 50 over a side game commences at 11am and admission is free with free parking on the ground and full bar and catering facilities for spectators available all day. 


Staffordshire squad: Kadeer Ali (captain, West Bromwich Dartmouth), Alex Mellor (Walsall), Peter Wilshaw (Meakins), Michael Hill (Meakins), Matthew Morris (Westhoughton), Tim Maxfield (Brewood), Paul Byrne (Walsall), Dan Richardson (Leek), Spencer Byatt (Little Stoke), Richard Williams (Checkley), Sam Kelsall (Moddershall Oulton), Shozair Ali (West Bromwich Dartmouth), James Cox (Wollerton).

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