Thursday 10 July 2008 

Graham Napier In Essex's Championship Squad

Essex have named a 12-man squad for their LV County Championship match against Glamorgan at the SWALEC Stadium, starting on Friday (July 11).

All-rounder Graham Napier is pushing for his first Championship appearance of the season on the back of his outstanding form in one-day cricket.

Opening batsman Varun Chopra returns to the side, after missing out on selection for the last Championship match, on the back of three centuries in five innings in the Second Eleven Trophy.

Fellow opener Alastair Cook is unavailable due to his international commitments with England in their Test match against South Africa, starting on Thursday at Lord’s.

"We’ve brought Graham Napier into the squad for obvious reasons because his confidence is sky-high (on the back of his recent performances in one-day cricket)," explained first-team coach. "There is a strong chance we may only play one spinner (because of the conditions expected) so if James Middlebrook doesn’t play, Graham will be in as the extra all-rounder."

Grayson went on to talk about Essex's approach for Worcestershire opening batsman Stephen Moore.

“It’s common knowledge that we are looking to strengthen the top of the order and Stephen Moore is a player we like who we think would fit in well at Essex. Stephen has been a consistent performer for several years at Worcester on surfaces that have not always been batsman-friendly.

"At 27 he is the right age of player to bring in so we would like to get a chance to sell the Club to him. With the team moving in the right direction we hope cricketers will see Chelmsford as being the place to play and that recent events have enhanced our pulling power."