MINOR Counties cricket returns to Kington for the first time in three seasons when the Recreation Ground hosts Herefordshire's MCCA Trophy clash with Shropshire on Sunday, starting at 11am.

Pitch problems have prevented the border club from hosting a county match since Devon were the visitors for a three-day match back in June 2004.

Hereford are likely to field only two survivors from that match in skipper Chris Boroughs and home player Dave Exall.

Exall will certainly be hoping to repeat his form of that occasion when he top-scored with 83 as Herefordshire slipped to a 94-run defeat.

That was Exall's highest innings in Minor Counties cricket but he was also in fine form in the opening game of last season's MCCA Trophy when his spectacular unbeaten 80 helped to inflict the only defeat of the competition on eventual winners Northumberland.

Unfortunately, that was also Herefordshire's only success last term.

In the corresponding match in 2007, played at Oswestry, Herefordshire acquitted themselves well and were beaten by just 19 runs.

Ian Thomas, who is named in the Herefordshire squad for Sunday's match, top-scored on that occasion with 77 while Boroughs notched 51.

Thomas is joined in the squad by three players from the home club.

Exall, now an established member of the county line-up will be joined by off-spinner Owen Price, who featured regularly last term, and teenager Ben Stebbings, who will be making his county debut.

Big things are expected of Hereford Cathedral School pupil Stebbings who was a heavy run scorer for Kington as they won promotion to Division 3 of the Birmingham League last season.

Another debut-maker will be wicket-keeper Ian Stevenson while Eastnor paceman Faisal Khalid makes his second appearance.

Trophy matches are played as 50 overs per side on a one-day basis.