Ben Allison and Will Buttleman named in London and East squad for Super-4s


Four members of the England Under-19s squad are among the 56 young talents who will contest the fifth Super-4 Competition for the country’s outstanding Under-17s in Loughborough this week.

Derbyshire’s Hamidullah Qadri and Worcestershire’s Adam Finch will line up for the Midlands, Essex seamer Ben Allison for London and East, and Somerset all-rounder Tom Lammonby – who was named England’s best player in the Royal London One-Day Series against India – will hope to lead the South West to a first Super-4 victory.

The North have dominated the competition since it was introduced in 2013, winning their third title out of four last summer – when Yorkshire’s Harry Brook was named man of the tournament, and Durham’s Matt Potts was man of the match in the final.

Both those players have represented their counties at first-team level this season, as well as joining Qadri, Finch, Allison and Lammonby in the England Under-19 squad – showing why the Super-4s are well worth watching for fans with an eye on the future.

Lancashire have six representatives to Yorkshire’s five in this year’s North squad, led by highly-rated wicketkeeper-batsman George Lavelle, the player of the tournament in last year’s Bunbury Festival for Under-15s.

Lavelle is joined by Mo Ahmad, Jamie Crawley, Sam Dorsey, Jack Morley and Rehan Udwadia.

Alec Drury, Harry Harding, George Hill, Eitan Litvin and Vikram Sharma form the Yorkshire quintet, and the North squad is completed by three Cheshire youngsters – Ed Fluck, Ben Gibbon and Sam Perry.

Lammonby, who is from Devon, is one of six players affiliated to Somerset in the South West squad – with Ned Dunning, Nathan Gilchrist, Louis Goldsworthy, Will Smeed and Ben Wells.

They are joined by Milo Ayres, Ben Charlesworth, Jack Gibbs and Tom Price of Gloucestershire, plus Tom Bevan, Chris Matthews and Roman Walker of Glamorgan, and Scott Currie of Hampshire.

Finch is one of three Worcestershire players in the Midlands squad, with Jack Haynes and Zain Ul-Hassan. Warwickshire have four representatives – Ethan Brookes, whose elder brother Henry was another member of the Under-19s squad, plus Jaques Banton, Ben Griffin and Robert Yates. Banton is the younger brother of Tom, the Somerset wicketkeeper-batsman who joined Henry Brookes in the Under-19s.

Northamptonshire also have three players in the Midlands squad – Ben Claydon, Connor Haddow and Adam King – with Jordan Cook and Nick Kimber of Nottinghamshire, and Qadri joined by his Derbyshire team-mate James Taylor, a seamer who made his senior debut against West Indies earlier this month.

Allison is joined by a second Essex representative, Will Buttleman, in the London and East squad, which is dominated by five Surrey players – Freddie Boys, Sam Hall, Prince Singh, Nathan Smith and Nathan Tilley.

Taylor Chandler, Sam Davis and wicketkeeper Jordan Cox represent Kent; Henry Crocombe is a lone representative for Sussex; and the Middlesex trio Jack Davies, Luke Holman and Charlie Scott complete the squad.

The Super-4s week has a different structure this year. The teams will again play each other in 50-over matches over the first three days of competition, on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. But instead of a Finals Day on the Saturday, the champions will be determined by the final placings in the league table – leaving Saturday clear for a separate T20 competition.

James Taylor, the former Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and England batsman, will speak to the players when they gather in Loughborough on Monday, and the cricket will be watched by a number of England’s lead coaches as well as Young Lions selectors and scouts, raising the stakes for the players involved.