The Mitre 10 Cup final in Rotorua will not be the only Battle of the Bays this weekend.
The second annual Howell Family Trophy cricket series will take place at the Tauranga Domain over the Labour weekend holiday break when a Craigs Investment Partners Bay of Plenty XI hosts Hawke's Bay.
Last year the Bay of Plenty and Hawke's Bay cricket associations decided the representative warm-up matches should become a regular fixture and to cement the games in their annual calendar, the Howell Family Cup was put up for competition.
The Howell family has had strong cricket connections with both Hawke's Bay and Bay of Plenty.
John Howell played for Hawke's Bay in the Hawke Cup and Central Districts regional competition before moving north to Bay of Plenty in the early 2000s.
John's two sons, Llorne and Glynn, also played major association cricket with Llorne playing for Bay of Plenty on 38 occasions.
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A squad of 14 players has been selected to play in the weekend games, with various combinations being tried out, as Bay of Plenty prepare for their coming Northern Districts representative season.
Two uncapped players have made the Bay of Plenty squad on the back of sterling performances in the early stages of the 2019 Bay of Plenty Cup premier grade competition.
While the three weekend encounters don't have official representative status, they will provide an opportunity for Daniel Price and Habib Malik to break into the Bay of Plenty senior representative side later in the season.
Daniel Price has recently returned home from a successful stint playing English League cricket during the New Zealand winter.
The Te Puke batsman was selected for the Bay of Plenty Development side last season, where he performed with distinction with a highest score of 49 in three appearances.
Lake Taupō CC captain Habib Malik is an all-rounder who is equally adept with both bat and ball. He is a top order batsman for his premier club side and a deceptive change bowler.
Three of the most promising young players in the country will be on show at the Tauranga Domain after recent appearances for the New Zealand Under-19 team who played their Bangladesh counterparts in a recent series in the South Island.
Keeper Ben Pomare, hard hitting top order batsmen Fergus Lellman and all-rounder Tim Pringle enhanced their chances for selection in the New Zealand team to play in next year's ICC Under 19 Cricket World Cup in South Africa.
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Bay of Plenty XI v Hawke's Bay
October 26/27 at Tauranga Domain
Day One: Two Twenty20 matches
Day Two: 50 over match
Bay of Plenty XI Squad
Ben Musgrave – Captain, Peter Drysdale, Chris Atkinson, Ben Pomare (Mount Maunganui) Stephen Crossan, Blair McKenzie, Dan Price, Cam Riley, Mikaere Leef (Te Puke) Joe Carter, Fergus Lellman (Cadets) Tim Pringle (Tauranga Boy's College) Habib Malik (Lake Taupo CC) Bharat Popli.