Cricket: Moxon faces hard call for Headingley toss: Derek Hodgson on today's NatWest quarter-finals

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The Independent Online
MARTYN MOXON and Dermot Reeve are heading for a confrontation even before the start of the NatWest Trophy quarter-final at Headingley today. When the respective captains of Yorkshire and Warwickshire go out to toss the coin, one or the other will be unhappy with the chosen pitch. Their choice is limited to one of four because of the siting of the television cameras.

Moxon could insist on the pitch used by England and Australia in the fourth Test that ended yesterday. Warwickshire would prefer one newly cut, one width away, which, exposed during the Test, is too cracked for Yorkshire's liking.

The indeterminate bounce evident in the later stages of the Test might suit Allan Donald, reprieved from call-up by South Africa for this one match. The worn surface might also help Yorkshire's spinners, Richard Stemp and Jeremy Batty, and although Warwickshire won both the Championship and Sunday League meeting at Edgbaston, the Yorkshire batting, including Richie Richardson, looks the stronger.

Warwickshire's Tim Munton has a hip strain and has a '50-50' chance of being fit to bowl alongside Donald and Gladstone Small. The opener, Andy Moles, is having treatment for a bruised wrist.

Yorkshire have definitely ruled out Paul Jarvis, because of a leg strain, and are likely to include Michael Foster, 19, an all-rounder from Castleford. If the Test pitch is used then Warwickshire seem certain to make an official protest to the TCCB.

Ian Salisbury hopes to have recovered sufficiently from a shoulder strain to play for Sussex against the holders Northamptonshire at Wantage Road. The match is a sell-out, as is the fixture between Somerset and Surrey at Taunton.

Chris Tavare would love to end his captaincy of Somerset with an appearance at Lord's. He was reflecting, last week, on the manifold talents of Mushtaq Ahmed: 'What makes him more difficult to read than most is that he has four different methods of bowling a leg-break. The ball may break the same way when it pitches but how is the batsman, watching the wrist and fingers, to know?'

Surrey's power stems from the pace of Waqar Younis and Martin Bicknell, the latter a relative success in the Headingley Test. Joey Benjamin should play despite a groin strain.

Glamorgan's enterprising play this summer has won support outside Wales. They would be popular semi-finalists, but today they have first to remove Worcestershire at Swansea in what should be an intriguing contest of seam and spin against an array of batsmen, Richards, Hick and Maynard among them, all of whom have something to prove this season.

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