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Bowler Steven Cheetham joins Yorkshire on trial
Yorkshire have taken former Lancashire fast bowler Steven Cheetham on trial as they continue to explore options when it comes to strengthening their bowling stocks.
Cheetham, 24, was released by the Red Rose county at the end of last season after limited first-team opportunities following his debut for them in 2007.
But, following some encouraging displays for the Unicorns this season, the White Rose have given him the opportunity to return to the county game with some appearances in their second team.
He took two wickets in a three-day match against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road last month before adding five wickets against the MCC Universities at York’s Clifton Park in a game which finished on Thursday.
And, ironically, he will play in the Roses Second XI Championship match at Todmorden, starting on Tuesday.
“We are having a look at him, and it’s fair to say he’s made a favourable impression so far,” said director of professional cricket Martyn Moxon.
“It’s an area that we are looking to strengthen. He’s going to play for us again next week, but it’s too early to say whether or not we will be offering him a contract yet.”
Cheetham, who played two Championship matches for Surrey during a loan spell in 2010, is a tall bowler. He has struggled in the past with injuries.
He went wicketless for the Unicorns against Yorkshire in the Clydesdale Bank 40 match at Scarborough in May, but is unlikely to play in tomorrow’s return fixture at Headingley.
One man who is expected to play, however, is Ryan Sidebottom.
The left-arm swing bowler has been out of action since June 24 with a torn calf muscle, but played for the seconds alongside Cheetham at York, a match he came through with no ill effects.
Tomorrow’s Group ‘C’ clash provides Sidebottom with the ideal warm-up ahead of Wednesday’s crucial LV= County Championship match against Derbyshire at Headingley as well as some welcome limited overs practice ahead of t20 Finals Day in Cardiff in two weeks.
“Ryan got through three days of cricket, bowled 20 overs and got a 50 and a 20 as he spent some valuable time at the crease too,” said White Rose first-team coach Jason Gillespie. “He spent time on his feet, which is crucial.
“The plan was to give him a couple of days off and then get him into the side for a one-day game before Derbyshire in the Championship.”
The fact Sidebottom missed yesterday’s second XI one-day match against the Unicorns at Sheffield Collegiate should give no cause for concern.
“I’m comfortable that, as a senior player, Ryan knows his body,” added Gillespie. “He’s a very experienced bowler, and we certainly don’t need him to play two or three games in the seconds if he doesn’t feel that is the best thing for him.”
Yorkshire are looking for only their fourth Group ‘C’ win of the competition against the Unicorns.