Pardoe replaces Kervezee in Worcestershire squad

OUT-of-form Worcestershire batsman Alexei Kervezee has been dropped from the squad that will tackle Middlesex at Lord’s in Division One of the LV= County Championship tomorrow.

The Dutch international has been having a tough time with the bat so far this term and has totalled just 25 in four first-class innings, so director of cricket Steve Rhodes has opted to leave him out in favour of Matt Pardoe.

Rhodes explained: “Alexei has struggled for runs a little bit, so he will now need to try and force his way back into the side by scoring runs for the seconds.

“He is an excellent player, but sadly he has not got the runs needed so far this season, but there is no reason he cannot come back to form soon. Matt showed some good resilience for us last year and that is why he has been picked.”

Worcestershire will be looking to pick up their first win of the season at Lord’s having seen their last two games hampered by the weather. However, it will be a tough task against newly-promoted Middlesex, who boast a team packed full of quality players, such as Andrew Strauss, Steven Finn and Chris Rogers.

New Road chief Rhodes added: “Lord’s is the home of cricket and is always a special place to play - it is terrific to go there. Middlesex have a good seam attack and they back that up with a strong batting line-up.

“We are looking to improve our batting - especially in the first innings - and we have addressed that in our team meetings. However, the time for talking is over and we need to back those words up with our performances in the middle.”

Meanwhile, due to the flood water that has crept onto the New Road playing surface, Worcestershire have been forced to switch Monday’s Clydesdale Bank 40 opener with the Netherlands to Kidderminster Victoria’s Chester Road ground.

A club statement said: “Netherlands Cricket have been informed of the decision and are fully supportive of the change in venues.

“The flood levels at New Road peaked on Tuesday night, but there remains a substantial amount of standing water on the outfield adjacent to the marquee.

“While only part of the ground is under water at present and as the longevity of the flooding remains in doubt, the venue for the LV=CC match against Surrey, starting on Wednesday, will be decided at a later date when the club has had opportunity to evaluate the condition of the pitch and affected facilities.”

Worcestershire (from): Mitchell (c), Klinger, Solanki, Moeen, Pardoe, Cameron, Scott, Kapil, Jones, Lucas, Richardson, Choudhry, Shantry.

Middlesex (from): Rogers (c), Berg, Collymore, Denly, Dexter, Finn, Malan, Murtagh, Rayner, Robson, Roland-Jones, Simpson (wk), Strauss.

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