Hampshire captain, Jimmy Adams has been selected in a Marylebone Cricket Club [MCC] squad for their Champion County match against Warwickshire in Abu Dhabi.
Adams will travel for the game along with India batting legend Rahul Dravid and Australian fast bowler Shaun Tait for the March tour, which also takes in an Emirates Airline t20 tournament.
The Champion County match, which has traditionally provided the curtain-raiser to the County season, will see the MCC team take on LV= County Championship winners Warwickshire at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in day/night conditions with a pink Kookaburra ball; the same format as used in the past three seasons.
Adams said: “It’s a very unexpected and proud moment.
“When the phone call came through I expected it to be about something completely different – I know [Head of Cricket at the MCC] John Stephenson reasonably well through playing with him when I was starting here [at Hampshire] so I didn’t put two and two together at all.
“When he mentioned this I was very pleasantly surprised so I’m very much looking forward to it.”
The batsman’s selection means he will fly home early from Hampshire’s pre-season tour of Barbados to join up with the MCC squad.
Adams will travel back to the UK on March 18 – three days earlier than the rest of his County – and fly out to Abu Dhabi on March 20.
But the skipper says he doesn’t expect it to affect his squad too much.
“When I spoke to John it was the first thing I thought about, really,” he said.
“I went to speak to Chalky [Hampshire manager, Giles White] to ask him how he thought it would sit with the group and we didn’t think it’s going to be detrimental in any way.
“It would be nice to stay with the team as much as possible – I’m very aware of that – but it’ll also give someone else a chance to play some games out there and I’ll start again when we come back.”
Full MCC Squad: Dale Benkenstein (captain) (South Africa and Durham), Jimmy Adams (Hampshire), Joe Denly (England and Middlesex), Rahul Dravid (Emirates Airline Twenty20 only) (India), Simon Kerrigan (Champion County match only) (Lancashire), Steve Kirby (Somerset), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Sam Northeast (Kent), Alan Richardson (Worcestershire), Shaun Tait (Emirates Airline Twenty20 only) (Australia), Peter Trego (Somerset) + two players still to be confirmed.