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http://www.cricket.com.au/Global Items/news/2013/9/24/ryobi-cup-preview-nsw-blues

RYOBI Cup preview: NSW Blues

UPDATED 24 September, 2013 2:00PM AEDT | by Martin Gabor 3

The NSW Blues will be hoping the addition of Nathan Lyon and a resurgent David Warner can take them back to the top in this year's RYOBI Cup.

Welcome Aboard

The Blues have snapped up Australian spinner and former Adelaide Oval groundsman Nathan Lyon. The Blues need a frontline spinner and his probing length could tie up an end while NSW’s destructive pacemen do the damage.

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Farewell

The Blues have lost Adam Zampa to the Redbacks in a direct swap for Lyon. While NSW has gained the experience of Lyon, Zampa is a promising young leg-spinner and will be one to watch for SA fans.

The Path to Glory

The Blues launch the RYOBI One Day Cup on September 29 against the Tigers. NSW are the host team for the four-week tournament period and will be familiar with the first-grade Sydney venues in front of a home crowd. They have a fairly spread out draw and have the luxury of being able to choose from the largest squad.

Mark this in your Calendar

NSW and Victoria have provided memorable, big-hitting matches at North Sydney Oval over the years, so the October 20 clash should be no different.

Dan Smith massacred an unbeaten 179 off 122 deliveries in 2011 to help the Blues chase down 317 with 10 overs to spare.

Last year, Aaron Finch and David Hussey each struck 140 as the Bushrangers reeled in 350 with 20 balls remaining.

This year’s clash is set to provide fans with plenty of catching practice.

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Keep an Eye on…

Gurinder Sandhu took his opportunities in 2012/13 and is now a mainstay in the Australia A squad.

The 20-year-old seamer flexed his muscles in last year’s RYOBI One Day Cup with 5/35 in Hobart and a trio of three wicket hauls. It was an impressive debut season for the genuine wicket-taker, whose consistent performances culminated in being awarded the Steve Waugh Medal for the best NSW cricketer for the 2012/13 season.

Pressure’s on

With his spot in the Australian side up in the air, David Warner looms as the trump card for the Blues. He will be keen to impress selectors early on, so expect to see him come out swinging.

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia. 

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 24 September, 2013 1:45PM AEDT

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