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Norfolk preparing for a tense final day in Twenty20 competition

PUBLISHED: 09:11 15 June 2018

Norfolk's one-day skipper Ashley Watson (second left) and wicketkeeper Sam Groves were both awarded their county caps before the match against Shropshire on Sunday. Also pictured are chairman of selectors David Bowker (left) and Norfolk chairman Richard Wright. Picture: TIM FERLEY

Norfolk's one-day skipper Ashley Watson (second left) and wicketkeeper Sam Groves were both awarded their county caps before the match against Shropshire on Sunday. Also pictured are chairman of selectors David Bowker (left) and Norfolk chairman Richard Wright. Picture: TIM FERLEY

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Norfolk go into their final group double-header in the Minor Counties Twenty20 competition on Sunday knowing they might have to get their calculators out at the end of it.

Ashley Watson’s side are locked together with Cambridgeshire and weekend opponents Hertfordshire at the top of the table, with only one side going through to National Finals Day at Wormsley on August 26.

All three have picked up eight points from their opening six games, meaning there’s a fair chance that the side with the best run rate after Sunday’s fixtures will move forward to represent the Eastern Counties at the picturesque Buckinghamshire venue.

Norfolk can make sure they finish above Hertfordshire by winning both games at Manor Park, but what happens in the other double-header at March, where Cambridgeshire take on Bedfordshire, is obviously out of their control.

If the hosts beat the group whipping boys twice then Watson’s team will need a superior scoring rate to finish above them, assuming of course that they fulfil their part of the bargain.

“It’s going to be a pretty tense day I think, and at some stage I am going to have to know what is going on at March,” said Watson. “Our main aim has to be win our two games but if we did that we would still need a favour from Bedfordshire to go through automatically.

“If we don’t get one we will need to look at our run rate so I will be on my phone at lunch to see what is happening at March.

“We will focusing on what we have to do, but it makes sense to keep an eye on Cambridgeshire as well.

“Who knows, two wins might be enough because I know Bedfordshire captain Andy Reynoldson well and he is desperate to avoid a whitewash. But if it looks like Cambridgeshire are going to win both games we have to be prepared.”

Norfolk will be aiming to bounce back from the disappointment of bowing out of the Minor Counties Knock-out Trophy last Sunday when visitors Shropshire recorded a three wicket win.

Norfolk: S Arthurton, S Marillier, J Reynolds, R Taylor, J Taylor, A Watson, B France, B Coote, B Stolworthy, R Findlay, S Groves.

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