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Stars come out on Teesside in benefit event for Pyrah; cricket.

TEESSIDE cricket fans will be in for a treat next week when county champions Yorkshire warm up for their T20 blast campaign with a game at Marton.

A Yorkshire team will take on an NYSD Professionals Select XI in a challenge game at the club's Stokesley Road ground on Wednesday evening.

The Tykes get their T20 Blast campaign underway on Friday, May 15, with a home fixture against Derbyshire, at Headingley, and the Marton match will provide the players with valuable practice out in the middle ahead of their opening game.

The game also doubles up as a benefit event for Yorkshire allrounder Richard Pyrah.

The county have asked to play four of their own players in the NYSD Professionals Select side so their full squad gain competitive match practice ahead of the T20 tournament.

Sri Lankan Shani Dissanayake will captain the NYSD team which is set to include Saeed Bin Nasir and Lee Hodgson (both Marske), Aamer Sajjad (Barnard Castle), James Weighell (Stokesley), Hasantha Fernando and Jack Hardy (both Marton). Dissanayake is something of a legend in Richmond, where he was overseas professional for 12 years before his move to Hartlepool.

Sajjad is a first-class world record holder and Fernando has played two Test matches and seven one day internationals for Sri Lanka. All-rounder James Weighell can be described as a T20 specialist having captained the Durham Academy team when they won the 2014 NEPL T20 competition.

Wicketkeeper Jack Hardy has also featured at that level for Durham while Lee Hodgson will no doubt be champing at the bit to impress following spells with both Surrey and Yorkshire earlier in his career.

The county championship trophy will be on display during the game, and while the match is in progress there will also be a heat of the Yorkshire Top Gun competition aimed at finding the fastest bowler in Yorkshire.

Darlington Building Society, the NYSD's major sponsor, are running a simultaneous competition to find the fastest bowler in the NYSD at both Under-18 and senior level - the winners will take home a prize of PS25 each to mark the 25th anniversary of society's support of the league.

The match starts at 5.30pm with plenty of T20 razzamatazz to enjoy and spectators are urged to arrive in good time to enjoy a rare spectacle of top level short format cricket.

| DURHAM will be aiming to |make it three from three when they take on Middlesex at Lord's today.

Paul Collingwood's side have won their two opening County Championship fixtures and, for the third game in a row, head coach Jon Lewis has named an unchanged 13-man squad.

All-rounder Scott Borthwick has been delighted by Durham's start, saying: "They were two big games and we knew we had to play well. I thought we were fantastic this week.

Squad: Stoneman, Jennings, Borthwick, Arshad, Richardson, MacLeod, Collingwood, Mustard, Hastings, Rushworth, Onions, Coughlin, Pringle.

CAPTION(S):

Yorkshire's |Richard Pyrah hooks a shot while in County Championship action. The Tykes allrounder plays in his benefit match against an NYSD Professionals Select side at Marton next week JEREMY PARDOE

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Date:May 2, 2015
Words:515
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