Rain again played a role in today’s county action, with the final day of Durham’s match against Worcestershire completely abandoned resulting in a draw at New Road. The second day of Sussex’s match against Warwickshire at Edgbaston, and the third day between Gloucestershire and Essex at Cheltenham were also abandoned without a ball bowled.
At Uxbridge, 70 overs were possible on the third day, with Middlesex closing strongly on 239 for two against Nottinghamshire. Andrew Strauss ended unbeaten on 127 as he found form before next week’s first Test, and shared a second-wicket partnership of 143 with captain Chris Rogers, who made 59. Middlesex lead by eight runs going into the final day.
Kevin Pietersen smashed Lancashire’s bowling attack to all parts during a breathtaking innings of 234 not out from 190 balls on the third day at Guildford. The home side had lost Rory Burns first ball as they replied to Lancashire’s imposing 485 for seven declared, but Pietersen and Zander de Bruyn added 181 for the third wicket in the space of just 208 balls prior to the latter’s departure for 94.
When Lancashire were asked before the match what their plans were for Pietersen, they responded, perhaps partly in jest, that they would just throw the ball to left-arm spinner Simon Kerrigan. This plan proved flawed as Pietersen pummelled him for 152 runs from his 23 overs. The England man brought up his century from 93 balls and his double century from 170 and took Surrey to stumps on 430 for five.
In Division Two, Joe Root was denied the opportunity to carry his bat only by a late declaration from Yorkshire skipper Phil Jaques on the penultimate day at Southampton. He ended with a majestic 222 not out from just 270 balls as the visitors called an end to their innings immediately upon collecting their fourth bonus point. The defining partnership of Yorkshire’s innings was the one for the eighth wicket between Root and Steve Patterson. A Dimitri Mascarenhas double-strike had reduced them to 108 for six, but their stand of 121, of which Patterson scored just 37, proved pivotal.
Yorkshire’s declaration left Hampshire’s openers 12 overs to survive before stumps, which they did, reaching 39 without loss, as Stephen Harmison sent down four wides in his first five overs for his new county.
Northamptonshire were denied what would have been their first win of this year's Clydesdale Bank 40 competition by the weather at Wantage Road. Derbyshire had inserted the home side after winning the toss and soon had them 37 for two thanks to a brace of wickets from Mark Turner. However, skipper Alex Wakely and the returning David Sales put on 152 for the third wicket to give the Steelbacks the advantage on what was a used pitch.
The pair advanced the score to 189 in the 35th over, before some excellent death bowling from Derbyshire's quicker men, led by Turner, who took four for 38, pegged them back to 220 for eight.
The Falcons faced just 6.1 overs in their run chase, slipping to 19 for two, before rain brought a permanent halt to proceedings.
Day Four, LV=CCD1, Middlesex v Nottinghamshire at Uxbridge
Day Four, LV=CCD1, Surrey v Lancashire at Guildford
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Warwickshire v Sussex at Edgbaston
Day Four, LV=CCD2, Gloucestershire v Essex at Cheltenham
Day Four, LV=CCD2, Hampshire v Yorkshire at Southampton
Day One, LV=CCD2, Northamptonshire v Glamorgan at Wantage Road
Group A, CB40, Leicestershire v Worcestershire at Grace Road (1245 GMT start)
Day Two, Tour Match, Kent v South Africans
Weather Forecast: After an overcast start, tomorrow should be mostly sunny with only the occasional shower expected. Temperatures will peak at around 17 degrees Celsius.
County News In Brief:
Former Worcestershire captain Vikram Solanki has admitted that he is “not overjoyed” at the thought of leaving New Road. He was given permission to talk to other counties by the club earlier this week.
Marcus Trescothick is expected to make his return to action for Somerset’s second XI next week. He has not completely ruled out playing in the club’s Friends Life t20 quarter-final at the end of the month.
© Cricket World 2012
Open an account with bet365 today and qualify for up to £200 in free bets with our fantastic 100% Deposit Bonus.