Worcestershire all-rounder Joe Leach believes the current competition for places is the most intense during his time at the county and said "it's a wonderful position for us to be in as a squad."

Leach, currently with the Worcestershire squad on their pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi, feels very few spots in the starting eleven are guaranteed.  

He will be battling it out with the likes of fit again Gareth Andrew, Ross Whiteley and the emerging Ed Barnard for an all-rounder spot.

Leach, who has just returned from playing in Australia this winter, said: "The competition for places, I don't think it's something we've had like now while I've been here.

"I wouldn't want to be in Mitch (skipper Daryl Mitchell) and Bumpy's (Director of Cricket Steve Rhodes) shoes at the moment trying to write down the side which is good.

"I think pre-season will shape the side and it's up to people to take their chances.

"There are maybe only three or four spots in the team guaranteed, maybe even less than that with Moeen not being here.

"That's a wonderful position for us to be in as a squad and as a side really."

Leach, who picked up two wickets against Derbyshire yesterday, added: "You want guys in the second team putting real pressure on guys in the first team by scoring big hundreds and taking five wickets and putting in consistent performances.

"I think you will probably see that happen this year because guys who are 14th, 15th, 16th in our squad are good enough to play in our first eleven.

"That is exactly what you need."