Rain ruined much of the day’s LV= County Championship action as the three concluding matches at Edgbaston, Bristol and Worcester ended in draws. The weather, however, wasn’t able to save Yorkshire’s bowlers in the Yorkshire Bank 40 as it was sixes that rained from the bats of the Somerset batsmen at Headingley.
Surrey’s experienced pair of Gareth Batty and Zander de Bruyn kept Durham’s batsmen in check on day two at The Oval. The home side had made a disappointing 237 on day one, but Batty (four for 73) and de Bruyn (three for 28) shared seven wickets as Durham closed on 279 for nine. It could have much worse for Surrey as Durham reached 131 for one at one stage thanks to 77 from opener Mark Stoneman. However, the rest of the batting line-up provided little support for Dale Benkenstein who ended not out on 70. The 38 year-old found the most support from Phil Mustard (35) and added 54 with him for the sixth-wicket.
There were less than 22 overs bowled on the final day at Edgbaston as Warwickshire took eight points to Middlesex’s 10 from the fixture. The home side ended on 374 for eight in reply to Middlesex’s 428 for five as Rikki Clarke became the fifth Bears batsmen of the innings to pass 50. He finished on 66 not out, with Tim Murtagh taking three wickets to end with figures of five for 85.
In Division Two, Gloucestershire took maximum batting bonus points by declaring their first innings at 400 for four in just the 99th over on day four against Hampshire. Michael Klinger and Alex Gidman (69) took their overnight third-wicket partnership to 109 before Klinger was finally dismissed for 163. Hampshire then reached 120 for four in the 50 overs that they faced in their second innings, with Michael Roberts top-scoring with 44 and James Vince unbeaten on 30. Benny Howell was the pick of the Gloucestershire attack with two for 15 from 13 overs.
Leicestershire and Worcestershire played out the expected draw on the final day at New Road. The home side declared their second innings at 61 for one after Leicestershire had declared their first at 379 for eight. Ramnaresh Sarwan completed his fifty and made 79, while overnight centurion Ned Eckersley advanced to 122 before becoming one of two wickets for Jack Shantry. Shiv Thakor ended on 52 not out, with left-arm spinner Shaaiq Choudhry the pick of the Pears attack with four for 111 from 45 overs.
Somerset thrashed Yorkshire in Group C of the Yorkshire Bank 40 at Headingley. The visitors racked up 338 for five from their 40 overs and then bowled out the hosts for 207. Peter Trego began the onslaught with 58 off 33 balls and added 96 in less than 10 overs with fellow opener Marcus Trescothick (37 off 27 balls). James Hildreth and Jos Buttler then took the game away from Yorkshire by adding 129 in 14 overs for the fifth-wicket. Buttler made an eye-watering 89 off just 51 deliveries, with Hildreth finishing not out on 96 off 84 balls.
Gary Ballance then top-scored for Yorkshire in their run chase with 60 off 57 balls, but they lost regular wickets and were faced with a spiralling required run rate. Alfonso Thomas emerged as the pick of the Somerset attack with four for 41, while there were a brace of wickets apiece for Craig Meschede and Steve Kirby.
Tomorrow’s Fixtures: (all YB40 matches start at 1345 BST, 1245 GMT)
day three, LV=CCD1, Surrey v Durham at The Oval
Group A, YB40, Warwickshire v Sussex at Edgbaston
Matt Machan replaces Matt Prior as the only change in the Sussex squad from the one that beat Northamptonshire on Friday. Joe Gatting is likely to take Prior’s place in the starting eleven.
Sussex squad: Ed Joyce (captain), Chris Nash, Luke Wells, Michael Yardy, Rory Hamilton-Brown, Joe Gatting, Ben Brown, Chris Jordan, Michael Rippon, James Anyon, Chris Liddle, Will Beer, Matt Machan.
Group A, YB40, Worcestershire v Nottinghamshire at New Road
The Outlaws are without James Taylor and Graeme Swann as they look for a hat-trick of wins in the competition. In their places come Ed Cowan, who returns after missing the last two matches match due to flu, and Graeme White.
Coach Mick Newell said, “If Swanny hadn't have been around then Graeme White would have been in from the start and he'll be a key part of our side from now on. Ed would have played in our last two matches if absolutely necessary but he has been suffering from flu and we had sufficient depth to be able to give him time to recover.”
Nottinghamshire XI: Michael Lumb, Alex Hales, Ed Cowan, Samit Patel, Riki Wessels, Chris Read (captain), Steven Mullaney, Graeme White, Andy Carter, Jake Ball, Harry Gurney.
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