Opposition Preview: Nottinghamshire
Opposition Preview: Nottinghamshire
Specsavers County Championship: Division 1 (2017 performance – Second in Division Two - promoted)
Captain(s): Steven Mullaney
Head Coach: Peter Moores
Director of Cricket: Mick Newell
Overseas Players: Ross Taylor (NZ) for first 8 Specsavers County Championship matches
Other Ins: Chris Nash (Sussex) and Paul Coughlin (Durham)
Outs: Chris Read, Michael Lumb and Greg Smith (all retired), Brendan Taylor (returned to Zimbabwe) and Brett Hutton (Northants).
One to Watch - Ross Taylor. New Zealand international Ross Taylor has been secured as the club’s overseas professional for the first part of the season. The Kiwi batsman has enjoyed previous county stints with Durham and Sussex and will join the Trent Bridge ranks for the first eight championship matches.
Taylor is currently ranked at 11 in the ICC Test rankings for batsman and at seven in the ODI list, a berth cemented by his outstanding recent innings of 181 not out, made against England at Dunedin.
The capture of the stylish stroke-maker should guarantee a significant number of early season runs as Notts look to compete strongly on their return to Division One.
Man on a Mission - Chris Nash. Nottinghamshire have lost a wealth of experience at the top of their batting order with Michael Lumb’s enforced injury retirement, Brendan Taylor’s rebound into international cricket with Zimbabwe and Alex Hales’ decision to opt out of red ball matches.
With big boots to fill, therefore, the decision to recruit Chris Nash from Sussex may be the canniest signing made by any county this winter. Now 34, Nash returns to Division One action with over 11,000 first class runs under his belt. He will relish the prospect of teaming up again with Peter Moores, his former coach at Sussex and can look forward to continuing a prolific sequence of scores at Trent Bridge, where he has a career average of almost 60.
Local Hero - Luke Fletcher. The entire cricket family were sickened by the head injury sustained by Luke Fletcher, in a televised T20 match for the Outlaws last July. Now fully recovered, the Bulwell Bomber, as he is affectionately known by Notts supporters, will be aiming to rediscover his best form and make up for an unwanted absence from the game. A vital cog in the bowling unit, Fletcher has worked hard on his batting in the winter nets and a pre-season hundred in a warm up match in South Africa bodes well.
Prospects for 2018
Even the most partisan of Nottinghamshire supporters won’t be banking on the county repeating their heroics of last season, an unforgettable campaign that secured both white ball trophies and promotion back to the top flight in championship cricket.
Pinning your hopes on exactly how they will fare may be difficult to predict at this early stage though. New captain Steven Mullaney has the unenviable task of succeeding Chris Read at the helm but his charges look more than capable of holding their own in Division One, providing they can get off to a decent start.
Notts begin with three away matches, with trips to Old Trafford, Headingley and Worcester before they can sample any home delights. Picking up points in those contests will be essential but hopes of a fast start have already received a set-back with new recruit Paul Coughlin requiring surgery after sustaining a shoulder injury, whilst on Lions duty.
His absence may give more opportunities in the number eight slot for Luke Wood, a genuine all-rounder who should now push onto greater things, as should Billy Root and Tom Moores.
Root’s century at Sussex, in the final match of last season, went a long way towards securing promotion and he should play a full part this time around, as will Moores, guaranteed to take the gloves.
Be part of the Red Rose - Official Memberships
Join Lancashire County Cricket Club as an official Member in 2018 and show your support for the Red Rose and Lancashire Thunder!
Our Memberships offer fans the opportunity to get closer to the Club than ever before - with access to home fixtures*, exclusive Members content, priority access to international tickets and a whole lot more.
Plus…we are also providing Members with the opportunity to join our Ashes Priority Club with our new two-year Membership options to give you priority ticket access for one of the biggest fixtures in sport.
To buy your Membership for 2018, you can buy online here or call our Ticket and Membership Office on 0161 868 6868.