KEEPING LORD'S WORLD CLASS
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The latest news ahead of the Summer Finale at Lord's on Saturday 15 September, as Warwickshire confirm Neil Carter is to retire following the match.
A Lord’s final is a great way for him to go out
Carter seems set to start the final against Hampshire, despite having been a bit part player for most of the summer.
The 37-year-old took four wickets in the Bears' semi-final against Lancashire - only his second CB40 appearance of the campaign. The other, against Yorkshire at Scarborough, also earned him four wickets.
It will be a poignant occasion for the South African, who has become a Warwickshire hero in an up-and-down career, which saw him released from his contract twice - only to bounce back a better cricketer.
Director of Cricket Ashley Giles alluded to his popularity in confirming that Carter, who was a star of their 2010 CB40 winning run, would be in the side on Saturday.
"We would be pretty daft not to pick him, I think we’d get strung up," said the former England spinner.
"He had four wickets in the semi-final last week. He’s certainly fresh. I would be worried if Carts had played a full season because, with all respect to him, he’s not as young as he used to be.
"But he’s performed brilliantly and I think you can guarantee that he’s going to play on Saturday - a Lord’s final is a great way for him to go out."
Recently crowned County Champions Warwickshire's could have presented a few more selection headaches for Giles ahead of the final, with the return of some of his international stars.
But the absence of Ireland duo Boyd Rankin and William Porterfield - as well as injured England star Jonathan Trott - has pathed the way the return of Ian Bell in particular. Bell, who made a stunning century at Lord's in the 2010 CB40 Final, will be a straight swap for former MCC Young Cricketer Porterfield at the top of the order.
Giles took time to praise the flexibility of the squad: "It shows the adaptability of the squad and its make-up. I have always been a fan of multi-skilled cricketers. We have a lot of all-rounders and I think we have some of the best in the country.
"That helps when you have injuries. You can move guys around to fill spaces. It gives you more flexibility and gives [bears captain] Jim Troughton more on the pitch."