West Herts will start the defence of the Watford Observer Fourteen14 Shield with a trip to Aldenham School in the second round.

Victory for the holders, who defeated Leverstock Green A in last year’s final, will then see them face Northchurch, Watford Town B or Rickmansworth School Staff in the quarter-finals.

A total of 18 teams entered this year’s knockout cricket competition and the draw for the first two rounds was held at lunchtime.

As per previous years, the Shield quarter-finalists from 2016 were seeded through to the second round. Entries were received from seven of the eight teams who reached the last eight last year, meaning the remaining place was awarded to Watford Town A as they are the highest ranked team in the rest of the Shield field by virtue of their league status.

Following the completion of the second round of the Shield, a draw for the Plate will be held. This will be contested by the two beaten sides from the first round of the Shield and the six defeated second round sides with the worst net run rate.

Competition packs, including a copy of the draw, will be emailed to club contacts by the end of this week.

SHIELD ROUND ONE – to be played by Friday, May 12

Match 1: Leverstock Green B v Bye

Match 2: Aldenham v Bye

Match 3: Aldenham School v Bye

Match 4: Watford Town B v Rickmansworth School Staff

Match 5: Met Police Bushey v Bye

Match 6: Chipperfield Clarendon v Bye

Match 7: Bushey v Bye

Match 8: Langleybury B v Watford Grammar School for Boys

SHIELD ROUND TWO – to be played by Friday, May 26 (seeds in bold)

Match 9: Leverstock Green B v Abbots Langley

Match 10: Aldenham v Watford Town A

Match 11: Aldenham School v West Herts

Match 12: Northchurch v Watford Town B or Rickmansworth School Staff

Match 13: Leverstock Green A v Met Police Bushey

Match 14: Radlett v Chipperfield Clarendon

Match 15: Bushey v Langleybury A

Match 16: Kings Langley v Langleybury B or Watford Grammar School for Boys