Worcestershire skipper Daryl Mitchell has stressed the importance of obtaining early season momentum after the fixtures for the 2016 campaign were confirmed earlier this week.

Mitchell is looking for a repeat of the impressive start to 2014 when the County were promoted to the top flight of the County Championship.

Worcestershire will launch the season with a three-day University match against Oxford MCCU at The Parks before the opening Championship match against Kent at New Road.

Mitchell said: "It is always good to get the University game in first as a bit of a pre-season friendly. That is a good thing and The Parks is always a reasonable wicket.

"It is nice to start at home in the Championship on our own wicket in front of our own fans and also finish at home as well.

"If you could ask, you'd like to start and finish at home.

"It is important to start well. It sets the momentum up for the season. You look to win every game but it's good to start well.

"In 2014 we won the first game here and won a few of the early games and performed well and got that momentum.

"If we can do that again and perform well in the Championship, and if we can start well in the T20, that will be important as well."

Worcestershire's first away Championship clash will be against Gloucestershire and 32-year-old Mitchell admitted: "I've never played a four-day game at Bristol.

"It has always been at Cheltenham. I've played one day cricket there so that will be something new for the old man like me!"

*Mitchell's former opening partner at New Road in Matt Pardoe is Herefordshire’s new captain.

Pardoe was released by Worcestershire at the end of the 2014 season after making 2,291 runs in 56 first-class matches at an average of 24.63.

Herefordshire spokesman Ken Sharpe said: “Matthew has taken over from David Exall who has captained the side excellently for three years including helping to instil a magnificent team spirit into the team.”