NEWPORT'S attention temporarily switches away from preparations for the return of County Championship cricket when they head to Mumbles in the South Wales Premier League tomorrow.

Glamorgan will entertain Gloucestershire at Spytty Park with the four-day encounter starting on Tuesday.

Newport have had an army of volunteers gearing up for the first Championship action in the city since 1965 with the installation of temporary seating, marquees, advertising boards and portable bars, plus work to ensure the playing facilities are up to scratch.

Glamorgan will train at the ground, which hosted a one-day clash against Pakistan A three years ago, on Monday morning with Gloucestershire following in the afternoon.

South Wales Argus:

"It's all systems go from 7am to 9pm," said Newport chairman and coach Mike Knight. "Something is happening all the time.

"The good news is that the weather is looking promising and I hope that the public come along to ensure that Glamorgan return in the future.

"Dave (his brother and fellow stalwart) and I were fortunate to be at the last games at Rodney Parade when we were young players and could sense the excitement, but a County Championship game is a whole different ball game to one-day cricket.

"There is a higher standard of preparation and with that comes a lot of pressure and a bigger workload. We have had a massive turnout of volunteers to help and everyone is so excited."

If preparations go to plan those helping to get Spytty Park ready will be able to leave for a few hours to head to Marespool as Newport aim to build on their winning start to Division One.

The champions beat Cardiff by six wickets with experienced batsman Michael Clayden, who was captaining the side in the absence of the unavailable Matthew Norris, hitting an unbeaten 80 to get them to a target of 209.

"We were a little bit light on batting so it was a challenge," said Knight. "Michael will be opening this year but was captaining the side so went into the middle order with the idea of batting through instead of being exposed by going in first.

"However, Michael came in at 31-2 and was superb – he said afterwards that it was one of his greatest Newport innings.

"He has scored a lot more than 80 for us in the past but in the context of the game it was a top-quality innings and Michael won the game for us, playing the situation really well and not taking any chances."

Newport are waiting to hear if they will be able to field both of their Glamorgan duo, all-rounder Callum Taylor and experienced seamer Michael Hogan, as their hosts would be without one of their allocated players.

Netherlands bowler Timm van der Gugten is set to play for Mumbles, who edged to a tense one-wicket win against St Fagans last week, but Jack Murphy is injured.

That leaves Sophia Gardens bosses with a call as to whether they will limit Newport to one, give Mumbles another pro or allow Taylor and Hogan to play regardless.

In Division Two of the Premier League, Malpas and Newport Fugitives meet in a derby at Bettws Lane.

The hosts started the season with a four wicket loss at Gorseinon after suffered a batting collapse while the Fugies lost by 76 runs to Newbridge.

Last year's South East Wales Cricket League champions 'Bridge entertain Swansea at the Welfare Ground while Panteg aim to get up and running after an eight-wicket loss to Ynystawe when they were skittled for 98.

It's week three of the South East Wales League with a quartet of Gwent teams chasing a hat-trick of wins.

One perfect record will go when newly-promoted Blackwood, fresh from a fine bowling display to defend 175 at Pontypridd, host Abergavenny, who beat Brecon by 81 runs with Adam Harrison hitting an unbeaten century.

Sudbrook lead the way on net run rate thanks to backing up their opening win at Pentyrch with a comprehensive 213-run win against Croesyceiliog. They head to Usk, who lost by 33 runs at Pentyrch last week.

Third-placed Chepstow entertain Croesy after beating Cardiff Gymkhana by eight wickets last time out, a more routine afternoon than their tight victory against Miskin Manor on opening afternoon.

Division Two champions Monmouth look to record a first win when they head to Cardiff Gymkhana while Brecon host Pentyrch and Pontypridd head to Miskin Manor