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Page last updated at 13:50 GMT, Tuesday, 8 September 2009 14:50 UK

Notts to address openers problem

Mick Newell
Nobody's taking their chance. The conclusion that you eventually come to is that people just aren't good enough

Mick Newell

Nottinghamshire director of cricket Mick Newell says his opening batsmen have not been good enough this summer.

Notts still retain hopes of catching leaders Durham at the top of the County Championship table, but they have already starting rebuilding for 2010.

"We've struggled to find an opening pair for a few years now. We're still looking for a pair who can do well for us," Newell told BBC Radio Nottingham.

"There are individual players who could have done better."

Newell added: "We've brought [Will] Jefferson in, we've brought Bilal [Shafayat] back, we've had Matthew Wood, we've used Alex Hales and Mark Wagh at the top of the order and now Scott Newman.

"At the moment nobody's taking their chance. The conclusion that you eventually come to is that people just aren't good enough."

Notts have already taken steps to address the problem by signing Somerset's Neil Edwards on a three-year contract from next season.

Newman is on loan from Surrey but Newell said he was not yet convinced that he deserves a permanent contract.

"We've got two games to go and then we'll sit down and talk to Scott again," Newell added.

"He's a player with a pretty decent first-class record. We have to decide whether his salary is good value for money."

TOP OPENING PARTNERSHIPS 2009 (County Championship)
Newman/Hales v Yorks - 76
Shafayat/Hales v Soms - 51
Newman/Wood v Sussex - 48
Jefferson/Shafayat v Warks - 36
Jefferson/Shafayat v Hants - 32

Newell also revealed that Jefferson may well have played his last game for the county.

"I don't think coming to Trent Bridge has been a good move for Will or for us," Newell said.

"I honestly believe that Will was a very good opening batsman. I will be permanently mystified as to why it hasn't worked out for him here."

Notts go to the Riverside for their penultimate County Championship match 27 points adrift of leaders Durham and looking for the victory which would keep alive their title aspirations.

Scott Newman and Alex Hales will again open the batting, after they put on Notts' highest Championship opening partnership of the season in last week's draw with Yorkshire.

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see also
Notts to sign Somerset's Edwards
03 Aug 09 |  Nottinghamshire
Newman extends Notts loan stint
19 Aug 09 |  Nottinghamshire
Newell considers overseas options
29 Jul 09 |  Nottinghamshire

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