CHAMPIONS South Wilts have been hit by a second blow inside a week – just as they prepare to face highly fancied Bashley (Rydal) in today’s top ECB Southern Electric Premier League clash at Bemerton (1pm).
Already without influential left-hand all-rounder Ryan Burl, pictured, for the foreseeable future – the 20-year old Zimbabwe Under-19 player dislocated his shoulder in a fielding accident against the Hampshire Academy last week – South Wilts have now lost one of their main strike bowlers.
Jack Sheppard, who took 16 wickets to aid last year’s title challenge, has left the Salisbury club. Keen to try and pursue a career in the county game – he was on a Hampshire Development Contract in 2012 – Sheppard has joined Ealing, the powerful Middlesex Premier League club, and could make his debut against Bro n d e s bu r y tomorrow.
“Jack’s left on good terms and we appreciate his reasons for going. He’ll always be welcome back at South Wilts,”
said former captain James Hayward.
With top order batsman Steve Riddle and teenager Jack Mynott also unavailable, South Wilts find themselves lining up against Bashley with a much weakened side.
Eddie Abel and the in-form Tom Morton will continue to open the batting, with second team skipper Tom Pearce promoted to bat at three and teenager Harry Hawkins four.
Pearce hit 96 for South Wilts II in last week’s win over Division 3 rivals Fair Oak.
Joe Cranch is also called up alongside Electric t20 Cup final bowling hero Dom Ducellier, who replaces Sheppard.
There is also a Premier Division debut for teen off-spinner Jack Richards, who has taken six wickets in South Wilts’ two ECB Royal London Cup wins.
South Wilts: Abel, Morton, Pearce, Hawkins, Hayward, Hibberd, Franklin, Cranch, Warner, Ducellier, Richards.