Groupings for 2010 Pro40 competition announced
The draw for next season's ECB Pro40 competition, which was announced on Monday, presents both Scotland and The Netherlands with an intriguing range of fixtures. But the Dutch may feel that they have come out of the process marginally better than the Scots.
The Netherlands have avoided both Sussex, 2009 Pro40 champions, and Hampshire, winners of the 2009 Friends Provident Trophy. But their Group B opponents will include Essex, who finished third in this season's Pro40 Division 1, and beaten Friends Provident semi-finalists Gloucestershire.
The match-up with Essex will be particularly interesting, with Ryan ten Doeschate coming up against his team-mates in the national side.
The other opponents for The Netherlands will be Derbyshire, Middlesex, Northamptonshire and Yorkshire. Their away matches are therefore likely to include a return to Lord's, scene of their Twenty20 victory over England in June, Headingley and the Rose Bowl in Southampton.
Scotland will again encounter Kent, whom they beat in this season's Friends Provident Trophy. Their remaining matches are against Durham, Hampshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and Warwickshire. Again, the Durham match will pit Scotland international Kyle Coetzer against his colleagues in the national squad.
Detailed fixture lists are currently under discussion. The winners of the three groups and the best-placed runner-up will contest the semi-finals next September.