Cricket: Somerset's Abell hopes for final joy at Lord's
PUBLISHED: 08:42 25 May 2019 | UPDATED: 08:42 25 May 2019
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Somerset captain Tom Abell hopes Saturday's Royal London One Day Cup final is not the last ever 50-over domestic final at Lord's.
Abell's men will bid to topple defending champions Hampshire at the home of cricket, while next summer's 50-over final will be staged at Trent Bridge.
The England and Wales Cricket Board has moved future 50-over finals to Nottinghamshire to accommodate new competition The Hundred, that launches next summer.
Somerset skipper Abell admitted the pride of walking out at Lord's still holds sway however and admitted hoping 50-over cup finals eventually find their way back to the historic London ground.
"I would hope this isn't the last domestic final to be staged at Lord's long term," said Abell.
"It's a massive showpiece event, for us as players achieving a Lord's final is a massive thing.
"It's something we're desperate to be involved in and luckily this year we are, and hopefully we can go on to win it.
"Obviously it's a shame this is due to be the last final here for the foreseeable future, but hopefully we can go on to win it, there will be a cracking game and a crowd who really appreciate 50-over cricket."
Hampshire skipper Sam Northeast hopes to see 50-over finals back at Lord's in the future too - but wants his side to swipe the last one at the famous venue as things stand.
Northeast will captain defending champions Hampshire in the absence of regular skipper James Vince, who is on England duty along with Liam Dawson.
International Cricket Council rules have denied Hampshire the influential pair, with both men tied to England in the World Cup build-up.
An unfazed Northeast insisted Hampshire can still retain their crown without their England stars.
"I think the dynamic in English cricket will change with The Hundred coming in, but it might then change again," said Northeast.
"It would be nice to see 50-over cricket played here again at some stage.
"But it's going to change in the next few years, and so we've got a great opportunity to get the last one for a while, and it would be nice to have that memory, the last final at Lord's.
"Speak to any player around the world, playing at Lord's is special. Everyone is motivated.
"We had a really good experience last year, so we're just hoping for more of the same.
"When you lose two players like James Vince and Liam Dawson you are clearly going to be weaker, but we have got some depth and whoever comes in will go well.
"We can't complain too much, it's a final, some people have us as underdogs but we won here last year and that experience has been absolutely crucial. If we can play to our best we'll be a handful."