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Ashes cricketer's son in Midlands Under-18 squad

12 December 2006

Zak Small, the son of former England cricketer Gladstone Small, has been included in the Midlands Under-18 squad for the Divisional Festival at Walsall later this month.
Small, a full-back, centre or winger from the Woodrush club in south Birmingham, secured his place in the trimmed down squad after a final squad session at Broadstreet RFC near Coventry last Sunday.
The squad will prepare for the Divisional Festival from December 28 to 30 with a residential weekend at Stamford School this weekend.
Small, 17, only took up rugby seriously three years ago after he was inspired by watching England's World Cup triumph and he has made impressive progress since even though he attends a non-rugby-playing school - Cadbury Sixth Form College - in Birmingham.
He represented Worcestershire and North Midlands earlier in the season and, like the other 24 players in the squad, has secured his place in the Divisional Festival after an exhaustive selection process.
His father, the former Warwickshire fast bowler, was a member of the last England side to win The Ashes in Australia 20 years ago. Gladstone Small is currently in Australia hosting a tour party of supporters for the current Ashes series and so will miss the Divisional Festival.
Two players, North Midlands prop Joel Diggins and Warwickshire forward Rob Wood missed out on Midlands selection because of injuries. Five players have been named as reserves in case of injuries to players named in the Midlands squad.
The Divisional Festival has been moved to Walsall from Castlecroft in Wolverhampton because of a floodlight problem. The kick-off times for the games on the opening day have now been moved back with the Midlands playing London and South East at 3pm and the South West playing the North at 5pm.
There will be two games on December 30 which will be determined by the results on the opening day.
Midlands Under-18 squad:
Backs: George Billam (Notts, Lincs & Derbyshire), Brett Chatwin (Warwickshire), Oliver Frost (North Midlands), Andrew Gates (NL&D), Ollie Grove (Warwickshire), Saneliso Ngoma (Staffordshire), Michael Penn (North Midlands), Cameron Pimlow (North Midlands), Andrew Robinson (North Midlands), Will Runciman (North Midlands), Zak Small (North Midlands),
Forwards: Tom Calladine (NL&D), Mark Deaville (Staffordshire), Phil Eggleshaw (NL&D), James Kirk (NL&D), Courtney Lawes (East Midlands), Chris Locke (East Midlands), Rob Milligan (East Midlands), Dominic Parson (NL&D), Simon Petty (NL&D), Barney Purbrook (East Midlands), Duncan Shrimpton (North Midlands), Ed Simmons (NL&D), Tom Stanton Warwickshire), James Wright (East Midlands).
Reserves: James Attwood (North Midlands), Jo Caunt (Leicestershire), Sam McCoy (North Midlands), Charley Thomas (Warwickshire), George Warner (East Midlands).

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