Strauss hopes series works well

13 March 2018 07:05:18 EST

Two spinners have been called up as injury replacements for the second North v South series that takes place in the Caribbean.

Middlesex's slow left-armer Ravi Patel comes in for Gloucestershire seamer Liam Norwell (hamstring) for the South team while Matt Critchley, Derbyshire's 21-year-old leg-spinning all-rounder, replaces Paul Coughlin of Nottinghamshire who suffered a shoulder dislocation on England Lions duty at the weekend.

Last year, the South won the inaugural series 3-0 in the United Arab Emirates but the rivalry will be renewed in Barbados.

"We introduced the North-South Series last year as part of a concerted attempt to emphasise the importance of 50-over cricket in the countdown to staging the 2019 ICC World Cup," said England's director of cricket Andrew Strauss.

"The series was successful in a number of ways, allowing players to press their World Cup claims in front of the England selectors and management - and also re-enforcing the importance of the Royal London One-Day Cup through the link with the PCA's MVP rankings.

"This year's series was always going to be a little different given the schedule of the England team which means Trevor Bayliss and Paul Farbrace are both in New Zealand.

"But the appointment of two members of the England coaching staff in Mark Ramprakash and Paul Collingwood to take charge of the teams underlines that the stakes will again be high for the players selected.

"The selectors have also made a deliberate decision to include some younger players who have impressed on our International Pathway, whether recent graduates of the Young Lions, or from the Pace Programme and Overseas Placements - looking beyond the 2019 World Cup towards 2023."

The first two games of the series will be staged at the Kensington Oval, on 18th and 21st March, with the third match switched to the Three Ws Oval on 23rd March.

Meanwhile, Chennai Super Kings are 6/1 to win the IPL this year and Mumbai Indians can be backed at 9/2.

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