Rain had the most to say as the first round of matches in the 2013 LV= County Championship drew to a close. The matches at Southampton and Cardiff saw no play on day four, with Leicestershire wicket-keeper Ned Eckersley left stranded on 99 as a result against Hampshire. The other matches in Division Two also ended in draws, with the three positive results coming in the first division at Headingley, Trent Bridge and Chester-le-Street.
The most entertaining of the day’s action came at Chester-le-Street where Durham ran out winners by 48 runs against Somerset. Resuming on 96 for two in pursuit of 235, Somerset progressed nicely to 130 before the wickets began to tumble. James Hildreth (27), Jos Buttler (0) and Alex Barrow (2) all fell in the space of four runs, with the rest soon following. Graham Onions and Ben Stokes ended with three wickets each, while there were two apiece for Chris Rushworth and Callum Thorp as Somerset were all out for 186.
It took only half an hour on the final day at Headingley for the result of Yorkshire’s first division comeback to be finalised as an innings defeat. Jack Brooks and Gary Ballance (63) fell in the space of three balls with the score on 248 as Steve Magoffin ended with five for 51 for Sussex. Yorkshire were always going to find it hard to come back from their first innings 96, which coach Jason Gillespie termed unacceptable when interviewed afterwards.
Middlesex romped home by 10 wickets at Trent Bridge. Toby Roland-Jones wrapped up the Nottinghamshire second innings for 182 with the first ball of the day, leaving the visitors 108 to win. Chris Rogers and Sam Robson appeared in something of a hurry and 25 overs later the match was over and both had unbeaten fifties to their names.
Warwickshire and Derbyshire called it a day with the home side on 201 for four at Edgbaston. Varun Chopra (76) and Ian Westwood (56) took their opening stand to 139 before Wes Durston chipped in with a couple of wickets to earn Derbyshire a bowling bonus point. Laurie Evans (19 not out) and Tim Ambrose (14 not out) then took the Bears to their first batting bonus point at which point the teams shook hands.
In Division Two, Essex ended on 353 for six after 102 overs of their first innings against Gloucestershire. Tom Westley was finally dismissed for 163 by Will Gidman but not before he had added 95 with Mark Pettini (35) and 73 with James Foster (51). For Gloucestershire, James Fuller and Benny Howell ended as the best of the bowlers with two wickets each.
Lancashire managed four batting bonus points against Worcestershire and eventually declared their first innings at 448 for seven. Ashwell Prince and Simon Katich both fell just shy of three figures and took their fourth-wicket partnership to 181. Worcestershire then faced 11.1 overs in their second innings before the draw was agreed with them on 26 for one.
Second round fixtures: (all matches start on 17th April)
CCD1, Middlesex v Derbyshire at Lord’s
CCD1, Surrey v Somerset at The Oval
CCD1, Warwickshire v Durham at Edgbaston
CCD2, Glamorgan v Worcestershire at Cardiff
CCD2, Leicestershire v Kent at Grace Road
CCD2, Northamptonshire v Essex at Wantage Road
MCCU match, Hampshire v Loughborough MCCU at Southampton
MCCU match, Nottinghamshire v Durham MCCU at Trent Bridge
© Cricket World 2013
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