BIG-HITTING Kiwi batter Colin Munro looks set to be the first of Worcestershire Rapids’ big names to take to the field as the club’s 2022 Vitality Blast campaign kicks off.
Munro has received the all-clear to link up with the Rapids and will fly into England on Thursday.
The New Zealand batter is hoping to make the first appearance of his third spell at New Road in Friday’s encounter with Notts Outlaws at Trent Bridge, though club chiefs will assess his physical state before handing him his bow.
Skipper Moeen Ali and second overseas star Dwayne Bravo are set to be in contention to face Durham at the Emirates Riverside next week, with the pair available to play from June 1.
And Munro, Ali and Bravo will all be available for the mouth-watering New Road meeting with the Birmingham Bears next Friday (June 3) which is close to a sell-out and the home fixture versus Leicestershire Foxes two days later (June 5).
Head coach Alex Gidman said: “Colin Munro is arriving on Thursday. He has had some passport and visa issues back in New Zealand, which were out of our control.
“The documents only arrived on Monday, so he won’t be able to get over in time for the first game.
“He wants to play on Friday at Trent Bridge. We’ve just got to make sure that physically he is OK, and obviously, flights are on time and things like that. But, all things being equal, he will be available for Friday.
“Dwayne Bravo just needs a short rest after the IPL, as he is carrying a little bit of soreness, so he will be available from June 1.
“Moeen, likewise, is having a quick breather after the IPL and should be available from June 1 too.”
Keeper Ben Cox will continue as Worcestershire Rapids’ official vice-captain for the tournament and will lead the Rapids in their first three games.
The 30-year-old led the Rapids on nine occasions last season when they came so close to qualifying from the North Group for the quarter-finals.
Cox said: “I learnt from last year’s experience and will look forward to leading the side if and when Mo isn’t available.
“Wicket-keeping isn’t far off captaincy anyway in terms of the aspect of field placings. You see your angles and work out plans. There’s not much difference there.
“We’ve got four tough games to start, all away from home, and no doubt it is going to be a challenge.
“But T20, we know what the game is; we’ve just got to go and flip from four-day mode to T20 mode as fast as possible. All the batters are in form, and it’s just a case of expressing yourself and scoring quickly. It is about staying in the present, turning up on the day and just trying to put in the best performance possible as a group.
“I want to score as many runs for the team and, when called upon, captain the side as well as I can. That’s the ultimate goal, and just try and win as many games as possible.”