27th August 2017
Carberry in line for Foxes debut
Opening batsman Michael Carberry is in line for a first Leicestershire appearance against former team Kent in the Specsavers County Championship fixture at Canterbury tomorrow (11am start).
It means that the left-hander could complete a ‘first game double’ with the counties as Carberry made his County Championship debut for Kent against the Foxes on the same ground in 2003.
Carberry’s availability after signing on loan from Hampshire is one of several boosts for Leicestershire ahead of a trip to a side looking for promotion.
Key all-rounder Ben Raine is fit again while captain Mark Cosgrove, Clint McKay and Mathew Pillans are in the 13-man squad having missed the previous red ball game against Durham.
Head Coach Pierre de Bruyn has urged his players to put Wednesday's disappointing NatWest T20 Blast quarter-final defeat at Glamorgan behind them and approach the final red ball games as a fresh challenge.
The Foxes lost by nine wickets in Cardiff as the white ball campaign came to its conclusion but there are still four games to go in the Championship, as well as the two-day match against West Indies next weekend.
de Bruyn said: "It was a bitter pill to swallow at Glamorgan because we felt we were sitting with momentum in the way that we qualified, and we also had a good start to the game with the bat.
"But we lost our way and ultimately it wasn't to be. We have four Championship games left and the motivation is there for players to end the season well.
"Kent are looking for promotion, so we know it will be a tough challenge down in Canterbury, but it is important that we put Wednesday behind us and fully focus on this next game.”
de Bruyn feels that the last month is a good chance for players to make an impression and wants the team to end with some victories.
"Results have not gone the way we would have liked in the Championship but we have a chance to address that in the closing weeks of the season,” said de Bruyn.
"The first game against Kent at the FCG was affected by the weather but we put a good first innings score on the board in difficult conditions and stopped their winning run. We will need to produce a similar batting performance at their ground.
“We are welcoming a number of players back to the red ball squad after injury, including Ben Raine, and it’s good to have Michael Carberry available too. We’re looking forward to the game.”
Kent have performed strongly with both bat and ball throughout the campaign. Their leading three run-scorers Joe Denly (921), Sean Dickson (729) and Sam Northeast (671) have all posted big season-best scores - Dickson’s 318 is the highest by any batsman in the Championship this term.
Darren Stevens is just 11 wickets short of reaching 50 for the season while fellow all-rounder Matt Coles has claimed 30 victims for a Kent side that are 17 points behind second-placed Worcestershire with a game in hand.
Leicestershire (from): Cosgrove (capt), Aadil, Ackermann, Carberry, Dearden, Dexter, Eckersley, Hill, Griffiths, McKay, Parkinson, Pillans, Raine.