Raine relishing Glamorgan challenge

In-form Ben Raine has called on Leicestershire to kick-start their season as Glamorgan visit the Fischer County Ground in the Specsavers County Championship tomorrow (11am start).

The all-rounder has produced two good personal performances so far, which has placed him top of both the batting and bowling averages, but said that personal accolades mean nothing if it is not in a winning cause.

“I’ve been over the moon with my two performances but haven’t contributed to a team victory yet," said Raine. "I’ve worked hard over the winter and am reaping the rewards at the moment, but in cricket you’ll always have good and bad days so I have to keep working hard.”

“We were expecting better results, and if we haven’t had the rub of the green sometimes, we’ve contributed, including by dropping catches.

“But there’s full confidence we have enough to turn it around. It’s a massive game against a team in a similar position [Glamorgan have lost both of their fixtures in 2017], and both teams will be looking to kick-start their season.

“I look around the dressing room and I see lads who are capable of pulling off something special, and that’s what we need now.

“We’ve lost the first two but we still want to be pushing for promotion and if you look over the course of a season you’re going to lose two games – that’s how I’m looking at it and I hope the rest of the lads are too." 

Leicestershire are without captain Mark Cosgrove, who misses the game against his former county due to the suspension picked up on the eve of the new season, while Colin Ackermann, Gavin Griffiths, Richard Jones and James Burke are ruled out through injury.

In-form Ned Eckersley will lead the side in Cosgrove’s absence and, overall, there are five additions to the squad, with Leicestershire naming a 14-man squad.

The Foxes are boosted by the availability of Charlie Shreck and Dieter Klein, who return from suspension and injury respectively.

Cameron Delport, who arrived in the country last weekend ahead of the Royal London One-Day Cup campaign, made a superb 157 for Leicestershire Second XI in their Trophy game at Northants on Wednesday. Delport’s performance has earned him a call-up to the squad and he is in line to make his first-class debut for Leicestershire.

Lewis Hill and Tom Wells are also pushing for places in the starting XI, as are all-rounders Zak Chappell and Rob Sayer, who were part of the travelling 13 to Bristol.

"I am extremely confident that we will bounce back in the game against Glamorgan," said de Bruyn.

"Cameron has earned his place in the squad with a big score as a senior batsman in the Second XI, and that is exactly the sort of performance that we're looking for.

"We need all of our batsmen to step forward and come to the party. We have the quality and experience and we must put the runs on the board against Glamorgan. 

"We have under-performed in the first two matches with the bat and now is the time for people to put their hands up and contribute. When the senior players lead from the front with bat and ball, there is no doubt that we will be a very tough team to beat."

Glamorgan have added off-spinner Andrew Salter to the XI that played against Worcestershire last week. Batsman Will Bragg, all-rounder Graham Wagg and seamer Timm van der Gugten, who have been key figures in this fixture in the past, are all ruled out due to injury.

Leicestershire (from): Eckersley (capt), Chappell, Dearden, Delport, Dexter, Hill, Horton, Klein, McKay, Pettini, Raine, Sayer, Shreck, Wells.

Glamorgan (from): Rudolph (capt), Selman, Lloyd, Ingram, Cooke, Donald, Carlson, Salter, de Lange, Hogan, Carey, Podmore.

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