DURHAM will be captained by Mark Stoneman for tomorrow’s Yorkshire Bank 40 (YB40) clash away to Hampshire.
With veteran one-day skipper Dale Benkenstein ruled out through a shoulder injury, many thought four-day captain Paul Collingwood would step into the breach.
But instead, opening batsman Stoneman has been given the opportunity to lead the team into battle.
And the 26-year-old, who has captaincy experience – he led Durham in their First Class Tour match against Australia A in 2012, which they won by 19 runs, and was captain the last time Dynamos faced Hampshire at Emirates Durham ICG last season – certainly seems undaunted by the role.
He said: “I’m looking forward to the game with Hampshire. Hopefully, we can get a good run in the one-day stuff and get a good result again tomorrow.”
Durham will certainly have their work cut out for them at the Aegeas Bowl.
Hosts Hampshire Royals won the competition last year and have won two of their three games so far this season to lead Group B.
Having seen off Essex Eagles and Scotland, the Royals’ only loss came gainst Surrey.
Durham sit in fourth having won one, lost one and had one no result.
That no result came in their last YB40 game against Surrey, where the Dynamos were looking to chase down a modest total of 216.
However, rain prevented any further play, which denied Stoneman and his team-mates what seemed a likely victory.
He said: “It was disappointing that we didn’t get a chance to bat against Surrey. We did well to restrict them to a relatively low total, but weren’t able to get back on the field because of the weather.
“It would have been a great way to round off what would have been an excellent week.”
Durham were without leading attack bowler Graham Onions, who was away on England Lions duty for all three of those matches, but Stoneman is pleased to have the paceman at his disposal tomorrow.
And he is also boosted by the news that Ben Stokes, who injured his back at The Oval is also included in the squad.
Durham squad (from): MD Stoneman, P Mustard, SG Borthwick, PD Collingwood, BA Stokes, GJ Muchall, GR Breese, RD Pringle, WR Smith, CD Thorp, MA Wood, C Rushworth, G Onions.