Championship cricket returns to Old Trafford
Championship cricket returns to Old Trafford

The past four weeks have been very productive for Lancashire, having reached the Semi-Finals of the Friends Provident Trophy and winning all six matches during the first phase of the Twenty20 Cup.

However, the focus for the next 19 days will be on Championship cricket, when Lancashire play three fixtures against Somerset (Old Trafford), Durham (Chester-le-street) and Hampshire (Liverpool CC, home fixture).

The Red Rose County are currently sitting second in the Division One table, and will be looking to take their current good form into their fixture against a strong Somerset side at Old Trafford starting Saturday (6-9 June, 2009).

Following training at County Headquarters today, Head Coach Peter Moores announced a 13-man squad for this fixture, which includes batsman Mal Loye who has been out since March with a calf than knee injury.  Andrew Flintoff is unavailable for selection as he recovers from recent knee surgery and James Anderson is playing for England in the World Twenty20 Championship.

This will also be the last match at Old Trafford for South African batsman Ashwell Prince, as VVS Laxman is set to make his 2009 Lancashire debut against Hampshire at Liverpool, meaning the Championship match at Durham will be Ashwell's final match for Lancashire this season.  Prince has been fantastic for Lancashire this season, having already scored 704 runs in all competitions (395 Championship, 150 Friends Provident and 159 Twenty20 Cup).

Speaking ahead of tomorrow's match, Peter Moores said; "We've played excellent cricket over the past month, gaining a home semi-final in the Trophy, and our undefeated start in the Twenty20 Cup puts us in a good position to progress to the quarter-finals.

"The challenge now is to switch quickly from one-day mode into first-class cricket, whilst capitalising on the momentum we have gained over the past month. Our form in the Championship so far this season has been very pleasing, however Somerset are a tough outfit and will be a real test for us. They have an experienced squad, particularly in the batting department, but we are still a work in progress and improving all the time – it's exciting times for Lancashire." 

Lancashire's 13-man squad v Somerset (6-9 June, Old Trafford);
Glen Chapple (cpt)
Mark Chilton
Steven Croft
Francois du Plessis
Kyle Hogg
Paul Horton
Mal Loye
Gary Keedy
Sajid Mahmood
Oliver Newby
Ashwell Prince
Tom Smith
Luke Sutton (wkt)
 

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