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Bob Willis Trophy: Fixtures, Regulations, Teams & Preview: All you need to know

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The Bob Willis Trophy replaces the County Championship 2020 with 5 rounds of matches, starting August 1.

The Covid-19 pandemic did not allow for the existing format of the County Championship - in which each team in both the divisions plays 14 matches each. To replace the format and still allow the counties to play both white ball and red ball cricket this summer, the ECB has come up with a truncated version of the County Championship this time around, known as the Bob Willis Trophy.

Instead of classifying the teams in two divisions, the counties have instead been divided into three groups, based loosely on geographical locations.

North: Durham, Derbyshire, Lancashire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire,Yorkshire

Central: Gloucestershire, Glamorgan, Northamptonshire, Somerset, Warwickshire, Worcestershire

South: Essex, Hampshire, Kent, Middlesex, Surrey, Sussex


There won't be any promotion or relegation this time around as each team will play against the five other teams in their group once. In line with the same, the matches will be played over 5 rounds with round 1 beginning on August 1.

Likewise, round 2, round 3 and round 4 will be played from August 8, August 15 and August 22 respectively - all Saturdays. The 5th and the last round will be played from Sunday, September 6.

The final will be played in early September or early October. In case the final is drawn, the team with the more first-innings runs will be declared champions. In the condition that even the first-innings scores are the same, the trophy will be shared.

Coming to the regulations, the matches will be two innings per side as usual, but the first innings will have a cap of 120 overs. As opposed to a minimum of 150-run follow-on, counties will be able to enforce the follow-on only with a lead of at least 200 runs.

A minimum of 90 overs will be bowled per day, with the new ball being made available after 90 overs as well. All the games will have First-class status.

 

Here's the full schedule of the Bob Willis Trophy:

Saturday, August 1 – Round 1

North: Derbyshire v Nottinghamshire (Trent Bridge), Durham v Yorkshire (Emirates Riverside), Leicestershire v Lancashire (Worcester)

Central: Gloucestershire v Worcestershire (Bristol), Somerset v Glamorgan (Taunton), Warwickshire v Northamptonshire (Edgbaston)

South: Essex v Kent (Chelmsford), Surrey v Middlesex (Oval), Sussex v Hampshire (Hove)

 

Saturday, August 8 – Round 2

North: Durham v Lancashire (Riverside), Leicestershire v Derbyshire (tbc), Nottinghamshire v Yorkshire (Trent Bridge)

Central: Gloucestershire v Warwickshire (Bristol), Northamptonshire v Somerset (Northampton), Worcestershire v Glamorgan (Worcester)

South: Essex v Surrey (Chelmsford), Kent v Sussex (Canterbury), Middlesex v Hampshire (Radlett)

 

Saturday, August 15 – Round 3

 

North: Durham v Leicestershire (Leicester), Lancashire v Nottinghamshire (Emirates Old Trafford), Yorkshire v Derbyshire (Headingley)

Central: Glamorgan v Gloucestershire (Sophia Gardens), Northamptonshire v Worcestershire (Northampton), Warwickshire v Somerset (Edgbaston)

South: Hampshire v Surrey (Arundel), Kent v Middlesex (Canterbury), Sussex v Essex (Hove)

 

Saturday, August 22  – Round 4

 

North: Derbyshire v Durham (Riverside), Leicestershire v Nottinghamshire (Leicester), Yorkshire v Lancashire (Emerald Headingley)

Central: Northamptonshire v Glamorgan (Northampton), Somerset v Gloucestershire (Taunton), Worcestershire v Warwickshire (Worcester)

South: Hampshire v Essex (Arundel), Middlesex v Sussex (Radlett), Surrey v Kent (Kia Oval)

 

Sunday, September 6  – Round 5

 

North: Lancashire v Derbyshire (Liverpool), Nottinghamshire v Durham (Trent Bridge), Yorkshire v Leicestershire (Headingley)

Central: Glamorgan v Warwickshire (Sophia Gardens), Gloucestershire v Northamptonshire (Bristol), Worcestershire v Somerset (Worcester)

South: Essex v Middlesex (Chelmsford), Kent v Hampshire (Canterbury), Surrey v Sussex (Oval)

 

Let's have a look at all teams:

 

Yorkshire - Adam Lyth, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Tom Loten, Gary Ballance, Harry Brook, Jonathan Tattersall, Ben Coad, Matthew Fisher, Steven Patterson, Duanne Olivier, Ajaz Patel

Northamptonshire - Ricardo Vasconcelos, Rob Newton, Alex Wakely, Josh Cobb, Rob Keogh, Adam Rossington, Tom Sole, Luke Procter, Gareth Berg, Nathan Buck, Brandon Glover

Essex - Nick Browne, Sir Alastair Cook, Tom Westley, Daniel Lawrence, Michael Pepper, Ryan ten Doeschate, Simon Harmer, Jamie Porter, Sam Cook, Peter Siddle, Ben Allison

Gloucestershire - Miles Hammond, Chris Dent, James Bracey, George Hankins, Gareth Roderick, Benny Howell, Ryan Higgins, Graeme van Buuren, Josh Shaw, Jerome Taylor, George Drissell

Lancashire - Keaton Jennings, Alex Davies, Josh Bohannon, Liam Livingstone, Rob Jones, Dane Vilas, Steven Croft, Tom Bailey, Liam Hurt, Richard Gleeson, Graham Onions

Kent - Daniel Bell-Drummond, Oliver Robinson, Heino Kuhn, Alex Blake, Hamidullah Qadri, Jordan Cox, Darren Stevens, Ollie Rayner, Harry Podmore, Matt Milnes, Mitchell Claydon

Somerset - James Hildreth, Steven Davies, George Bartlett, Tom Abell, Ben Green, Eddie Byrom, Lewis Gregory, Roelof van der Merwe, Josh Davey, Jack Brooks, Jack Brookes

Hampshire - Joe Weatherley, Felix Organ, Sam Northeast, Rilee Rossouw, Lewis McManus, Tom Alsop, Mason Crane, James Fuller, Keith Barker, Kyle Abbott, Ryan Stevenson

Warwickshire - Will Rhodes, Robert Yates, Sam Hain, Adam Hose, Michael Burgess, Tim Ambrose, Alex Thomson, Craig Miles, Henry Brookes, Jeetan Patel, Oliver Hannon-Dalby

Surrey - Mark Stoneman, Scott Borthwick, Jamie Smith, Gus Atkinson, Ben Foakes , Will Jacks, Rikki Clarke, Jordan Clark, Liam Plunkett, Morne Morkel, Amar Virdi

Worcestershire - Daryl Mitchell, Jake Libby, Brett D’Oliveira, Tom Fell, Jake Libby, Ben Cox, Ross Whiteley, Ed Barnard, Joe Leach, Josh Tongue, Charlie Morris

Middlesex - Sam Robson, Nick Gubbins, Stephen Eskinazi, Tom Lace, Max Holden, Nathan Sowter, John Simpson, James Harris, Toby Roland-Jones, Steven Finn, Tim Murtagh

Sussex - Philip Salt, Tom Haines, Luke Wells, Stiaan van Zyl, Harry Finch, Ben Brown, Ravi Bopara, Mitchell Claydon, Stuart Meaker, Danny Briggs, George Garton

Durham - Gareth Harte, Scott Steel, Alexander Lees, Jack Burnham, David Bedingham, Ned Eckersley, Liam Trevaskis, Ben Raine, Paul Coughlin, Nathan Rimmington, Chris Rushworth

Nottinghamshire - Ben Slater, Ben Duckett, Haseeb Hameed, Joe Clarke, Steven Mullaney, Peter Trego, Chris Nash, Samit Patel, Tom Moores, Luke Fletcher, Jake Ball

Leicestershire - Hassan Azad, Paul Horton, Harry Dearden, Mark Cosgrove, Colin Ackerman, Lewis Hill, Tom Taylor, Dieter Klein, Ben Mike, Chris Wright, Alex Evans

Glamorgan- Nick Selman, Charlie Humphrey, David Lloyd, Billy Root, Kiran Carlson, Chris Cooke, Craig Meschede, Andrew Salter, Marchant de Lange, Timm Van der Gugten, Michael Hogan

Derbyshire - Billy Godleman, Luis Reece, Wayne Madsen, Leus du Plooy, Alex Hughes, Matthew Critchley, Harvey Hosein, Fynn Hudson-Prentice, Tony Palladino, Ravi Rampaul, Samuel Conners

 

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