Joyce to captain MCC in traditional Lord's curtain raiser

Middlesex batsman Ed Joyce will captain the MCC side to play county champions Sussex at Lord s in the traditional curtain-raiser to the new season, writes Patrick Mooney. A 12-man MCC squad has been announced for the four-day match, which will begin next

Middlesex batsman Ed Joyce will captain the MCC side to play county champions Sussex at Lord's in the traditional curtain-raiser to the new season, writes Patrick Mooney.

A 12-man MCC squad has been announced for the four-day match, which will begin next Thursday. Joyce (pictured) will be joined by county team-mates Owais Shah, Alan Richardson and Steven Finn.

"It's an honour to be asked to captain the MCC team, and it's a match I'm greatly looking forward to," said Dubliner Joyce.

Also chosen are Essex pair Ravi Bopara and James Foster, as well as promising Yorkshire leg-spinner Adil Rashid.

Shah, Bopara and Foster are the only players with Test experience, while Joyce has played one-day internationals.

Spinner James Tredwell and seamer Graham Onions have been in England one-day squads without playing a match, while several other players have also been involved in the England Lions side over the winter.

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For the fourth successive year, there is an MCC Universities cricketer - Loughborough UCCE batsman Arun Harinath, who is on Surrey's books - taking part.

However, there is no place for England all-rounder Andrew Flintoff, who had been rumoured to be lining up for the game as part as his recovery from injury.