HEAD coach Danielle Hazell has announced her Northern Diamonds squad for the forthcoming Rachael Heyhoe-Flint Trophy, which starts next Saturday.

Ex-England all-rounder Hazell will lead the Diamonds team, which represents Yorkshire, Durham and Northumberland, into a one-off 50-over competition played between the eight new women’s Regional Centres of Excellence.

They will be split into North and South conferences, with the winners of each group meeting in a final on September 26.

The competition name was unveiled by the ECB in tribute to the late Heyhoe-Flint - England’s 1973 World Cup winning captain and pioneer for the women’s game.

Hazell said: “I’m really excited about the squad we have put together, there is a real blend of youth and experience.

“This competition is a fantastic opportunity for women’s cricket - and, in these challenging times, it’s great to get the game up and running.”

The Diamonds open their account against Central Sparks next Saturday at Edgbaston and play six group games in all.

They play two home games at Emerald Headingley and one at Durham’s Emirates Riverside.

SQUAD: Hollie Armitage, Ami Campbell, Leah Dobson, Helen Fenby, Phoebe Graham, Jenny Gunn, Bess Heath, Rachel Hopkins, Sterre Kalis, Beth Langston, Katie Levick, Alex Macdonald, Rachel Slater, Ella Telford, Layla Tipton.

FIXTURES: Central Sparks, Edgbaston (Aug 29); Lightning, Emirates Riverside (Aug 31); Lightning, Grace Road (Sep 5); North West Thunder, Liverpool (Sep 10); Central Sparks, Emerald Headingley (Sep 13); North West Thunder, Emerald Headingley (Sep 19).