Champions Lancashire want to leave Division Two with a bang this week when they round off the 2013 season against Kent at Canterbury.
The Red Rose side, who will be captained by Paul Horton, head south for Tuesday's clash fiercely proud of their record as the only unbeaten team in either division after 15 matches, eight of which they have won.
Horton leads a 13-man squad for the game with new signing Kyle Jarvis set for a possible debut.
Squad: Paul Horton (Captain), Andrea Agathangelou, Karl Brown, Jordan Clark, Alex Davies (Wicketkeeper), Kyle Jarvis, Simon Kerrigan, Oliver Newby, Stephen Parry, Ashwell Prince, Luke Procter, Luis Reece, Tom Smith
Kent will finish the season with three wins at best. The return fixture, only the second of the summer back in April, finished in a rain-affected draw at Emirates Old Trafford.
Opening batsman Horton said: "We're proud of our record this year of not losing a first-class match. This is another first-class game of cricket for Lancashire. You can't underestimate the value of that for each individual, whatever eleven we put out.
“It's an honour to wear the rose of the club. Whether there's nothing on it or not, it's still a first-class game for Lancashire. Whichever eleven goes out will be trying to win that game. We don't want to lose any fixture we play in.”
Horton is delighted with the way Lancashire have bossed Division Two this season. They were a touch slow out of the blocks in the first month with a couple of home draws. But once they got into their stride, they made a tough job look very, very simple with some exceptional cricket.
"I think we are (a bit surprised at how easy we have made winning the league look),” he continued.
“It's not an easy division to get out of. To boss it and play like we have and be 40 points clear or whatever we are, we're happy with. We don't underestimate how good we've played to get there. We're very happy. We've played some good cricket, and that's why we're in this position.”
Lancashire’s brand of cricket this season can be best described as relentless. When they have had a team down, they have rarely let them off the hook. The win against Essex at Chelmsford was the perfect example of this.
"You don't play any differently whether you're in Division One or Two,” added Horton. “Last year didn't go our way. We tried to set standards in all competitions as a club and as a group of players. We wanted to improve. We got on a bit of roll in this division, and we're happy with the outcome.”
The absence of Chapple due to a recurrence of his hamstring and Achilles injury opens the door for Zimbabwean fast bowler Kyle Jarvis to make his debut for the county after arriving at Emirates Old Trafford late last month.
The 24-year-old has been in the squad for the last two matches, both draws against Leicestershire and Gloucestershire.
And Chapple added: “He's very keen to get started and show us what he can do. He's looked really good in the nets. You can tell he likes playing cricket. He's already a proven performer, but I'm sure he wants to prove himself for us. It's a really exciting signing, and he should be good for us for a few years.”
Picture (c) Simon Pendrigh