WESTERN Warriors make their entry to the Tilney T20 Blast with a double header against Eastern Knights and Cally Highlanders at Titwood this evening and tomorrow.
The Glasgow-based side start underdogs against the champions but, despite the absence of three of their senior Scotland stars, take heart from their Pro50 win against tonight’s opponents in the final match of that campaign.
Richie Berrington, Matthew Cross and Calum MacLeod are all away at the Global T20 in Canada, a tournament when also deprives the Knights of George Munsey and Highlanders of Kyle Coetzer and Safyaan Sharif.
Warriors manager Colin Mitchell said: “The tournament in Canada is great for the individuals because Scottish professional cricketers don’t get the opportunity often enough to make money from the game the way players from other countries do.
“So we certainly can’t knock the players for cashing-in. The timing, though, is obviously frustrating and disappointing especially because it impacts on us more than the other regions.
“In saying that, we were without the same three players for different reasons when we beat the Knights in the Pro50 so it’s a great opportunity for others.
“We may be light on experience but will be heavy on motivation and enthusiasm.”
This evening’s winners will automatically go to the top of the table after last week’s opener between the Highlanders and Knights at Forthill was abandoned after just 11.4 overs.
By then, the home side had reached 109-3 and looked poised to set the champions a challenging target.
As well as their three Canadian G20 players, the Warriors are also without Gavin Main who is still short of full match fitness.
However, four of Main’s Uddingston team-mates, Niall Alaxender, Mo Awais, Ross Lyons and Abdul Sabri, feature in the squad and are sure to be full of confidence given their club’s place at the top of the Western Premier.