Glamorgan v Worcestershire
Act Two of 'Phil Jaques the Phenomenon' gets underway at Colwyn Bay today as Worcestershire's prolific opening batsman returns to county duty after his month-long sojourn trying to force his way into the Australian Test side.
Jaques has been with Australia A for the last five weeks putting pressure on Justin Langer for his spot at the top of the order with a double hundred and century - the latter a 103-ball 117 - in the match with India A.
Although Worcestershire have sustained the momentum he gave them when he arrived in mid-May, his reap-pearance comes at a crucial stage in the season when they are locked into their pursuit of the second promotion spot but having had their four-match winning streak ended in their last outing.
Although director of cricket Steve Rhodes will have to do without an injured Graeme Hick for the Liverpool Victoria County Championship match with Glamorgan, the blow will be softened by the fact that Jaques is back to open the batting.
His first six matches for the county were little short of exceptional. He thumped a match-winning century on debut against Surrey and went on to score three centuries and five 50s in that time.
Rhodes knows his value and, while he laments the torn webbing that keeps Hick out of today's fixture, he says the line-up is fortified by Jaques' inclusion: "When you have got a player as good as he is, you always miss him," Rhodes said.
"It didn't surprise me that he has scored lots of runs for us because that's what we signed him for. Be it Australia A or New Road the guy is a run-machine. A lot of the opening bowlers do not enjoy bowling to him which means his wicket is prized probably above most others."
Daryl Mitchell comes in for Hick having done well in recent weeks with the second team and Halesowen in the Birmingham League but Kabir Ali is still missing.
The seamer - who makes up a third of one of the most incisive fast bowling attacks in Division Two - continues his recuperation from a side strain that has kept him out for the last two weeks.
With five matches remaining after Worcestershire's appointment in the Principality, Rhodes does not want to rush Kabir back and risk a season-ending injury.
That means Ray Price will continue in the side while the in-form Matt Mason and Zaheer Khan will lead the attack.
Worcestershire are still smarting from their failure to convert a winning position against Derbyshire last week in which they managed the unusual feat of not taking a wicket in the first session of the fourth day.
That ultimately proved their undoing and meant they could not capitalise on Surrey's inactivity. They remain second in the division with Essex four points behind but having played a match more.
Rhodes is not too concerned by that slip up: "The sequence of wins has been broken but our unbeaten run has not," he said.
"That is what is pleasing, a few seasons ago Warwickshire won the title by drawing lots of games and if we can do that the way the points are structured it would put us in a healthy position.
"We have got some big games to come and this is just one of them. We have got to put behind us what happened at New Road when we were on the losing end of a draw and get ready to go into the Surrey and Essex matches in a good frame of mind."
For their part Glamorgan have called up MCC ground-staff member and left-arm spinner Kyle Tudge for Dean Cosker, who injured his knee against Gloucestershire.
Batsmen Mark Cosgrove, back from Australia A duty, and Richard Grant return to the squad.