County Championship: Yorkshire start season against Hampshire

Yorkshire county champions
Yorkshire only lost once in the County Championship in 2015

Yorkshire's attempt to win a third successive County Championship title will begin with a home fixture against Hampshire on 17 April.

The Championship starts a week earlier on 10 April with promoted Surrey facing Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge.

The White Rose county will launch the season on 20 March when they play against the MCC in Abu Dhabi.

The NatWest T20 Blast starts on Friday, 20 May and the Royal London One-Day Cup on Sunday, 5 June.

Opening round of Championship fixtures - 10 April
Division OneDivision Two
Durham v SomersetEssex v Gloucestershire
Nottinghamshire v SurreyWorcestershire v Kent
Hampshire v WarwickshireNorthamptonshire v Sussex

The basic format for the summer remains unchanged, with most Championship fixtures starting on Sundays and the majority of T20 Blast games on Friday evenings.

One big change will see the mandatory coin toss scrapped in both Championship divisions with the visiting captain being offered the opportunity of bowling first.

If he declines, the toss will take place as normal. If he accepts, there will be no toss.

Michael Vaughan Tweet
Former England captain Michael Vaughan has an insight into Yorkshire's opening fixture

The opening round of Championship games will also see 2008, 2009 and 2013 champions Durham take on Somerset and Hampshire, who avoided relegation on the final day of the 2015 season, play Warwickshire in Division One.

In Division Two, relegated Worcestershire face Kent at New Road, and Sussex, who also went down, travel to Northants.

Essex, who will begin the season under a new head coach following Paul Grayson's departure in September, play Gloucestershire at Chelmsford.

The second round of Division One games sees Yorkshire play Hampshire at Headingley, while Lancashire get their campaign under way against Nottinghamshire who will have Australian fast bowler Peter Siddle available.

Yorkshire, who were the last side to win three titles in a row from 1966-1968, face Lancashire in the first Roses match of the summer at Headingley on 29 May, with the reverse fixture at Old Trafford beginning on 13 August.

Key dates
20 March: MCC XI v Yorkshire20 August: T20 Blast Finals Day
10 April: Championship starts17 September: One-Day Cup Final
20 May: T20 Blast begins20 September: Final round of Championship games start
5 June: One-Day Cup gets under way

Lancashire, the reigning T20 Blast champions, start their defence of that trophy against Derbyshire on Saturday, 21 May, with the two nine-team North and South groups unchanged from 2015.

Beaten finalists Northants, who will be without England all-rounder David Willey following his move to Yorkshire, face a trip to three-time Twenty20 winners Leicestershire.

The final round of 14 group games takes place on Friday, 29 July, with the quarter-finals taking place from 8-11 August.

Edgbaston will play host to finals day for the eighth time on Saturday, 20 August, nine days earlier than this summer.

Lancashire T20 Blast champions
Lancashire beat Northants by 13 runs in the 2015 T20 Blast Final

The group stage of the 50-over One-Day Cup will be split over a couple of fortnights - one between 5-15 June and the other from 24 July - 2 August - with the groups made the same as those in the T20 Blast.

The final at Lord's, which saw Gloucestershire beat Surrey by six runs in 2015, is on Saturday, 17 September.

It comes before the last round of Championship fixtures, starting on 20 September, in which Yorkshire visit Middlesex - the only side to beat Jason Gillespie's men in first-class cricket in 2015.

Fixtures by competition
CC Division OneCC Division Two
One-Day-CupT20 Blast
Fixtures by county

Royal London One-Day Cup groups

Group A: Warwickshire, Durham, Yorkshire, Lancashire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Worcestershire, Northants.

Group B: Kent, Essex, Sussex, Hampshire, Middlesex, Surrey, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Glamorgan.

NatWest T20 Blast groups

North: Birmingham Bears (Warwickshire), Durham, Yorkshire, Lancashire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Worcestershire, Northants.

South: Kent, Essex, Sussex, Hampshire, Middlesex, Surrey, Gloucestershire, Somerset, Glamorgan.

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