NORTH Midlands will remember Nigel Banwell, the county president, who collapsed and died in January when Worcestershire & Herefordshire host Greater Birmingham at Upton on Severn next Wednesday (8pm).

Banwell was a founder member and stalwart volunteer worker for Upton and he collapsed while putting out flags before a league match at the club.

He will be honoured when Worcestershire & Herefordshire stage a memorial match at The Sports Field for the first time.

The match will also be Worcestershire & Herefordshire’s opening fixture in their defence of the Iskitz Three Counties Championship, a title they reclaimed with a 63-15 victory over Shropshire in last season’s final at Newport.

Shropshire scratched from their opening match against Greater Birmingham this week because of problems in raising a side but expect to be able to fulfil their final group match against Worcestershire & Herefordshire at Newport on May 3.

Worcestershire & Herefordshire have named a 31-strong squad for the match with the final match squad to be decided after this weekend’s programme of league matches.

The top two teams in the group will meet in the final on a date that has yet to be arranged.

The Iskitz Three Counties Championship is contested annually by the three Domestic Unions that make up the North Midlands RFU and provides players from outside the top four levels of league rugby in England the opportunity to play a high standard of representative rugby.

Worcestershire & Herefordshire squad: Ross Attwood (Bredon Star), George Bennion (Ledbury), Mike Diston (Evesham), Adam Dixon (Malvern), Tom Dodge (Worcester Wanderers), Guy Field (Bromsgrove), Craig Freeman (Malvern), Tom Gazey (Evesham), Sam Gladwin (Redditch), Ed Gough (Tenbury), Mark Green (Redditch), Tom Hale (Malvern), Josh Holt (Bromsgrove), Sam Hopkins (Evesham), Sam Jones (Old Halesonians), Ben King (Malvern), Max Macfarlane (Upton on Severn), James Martin (Old Halesonians), Ollie Meadows (Worcester Wanderers), Chris Pinner (Kidderminster Carolians), Brian Ranns (Pershore), Jamie Roberts (Evesham), Brad Smith (Luctonians), Oli Swift (Upton on Severn), Anton Taylor (Sutton Coldfield), Josh Tomlinson (Woodrush), Josh Walker (Ross on Wye), Ashley White (Pershore), Wilf Watson (Evesham), Bryn Williams (Redditch), Matt Young (Old Halesonians).