There was more joy for the nation’s batsmen as runs flowed on another sunny day around the country. Laurie Evans and Rob Key both reached three figures for their sides, while Sean Ervine, James Taylor, Daniel Bell-Drummond, Michael Lumb and Ateeq Javid all prospered.
A career-best 178 from Laurie Evans helped Warwickshire have the better of day two at Edgbaston. Evans added 199 with the improving Ateeq Javid (83) for the seventh-wicket as the Bears were finally dismissed for 463. Nottinghamshire then lost Steven Mullaney first ball to Chris Woakes and Alex Hales with the score on just 47. However, James Taylor and Michael Lumb both reached 50 and took the visitors to stumps on 131 for two.
Runs continued to flow on day two in Division Two at Old Trafford. Lancashire closed on 93 without loss in reply to Glamorgan’s 474 as both openers, Luis Reece and Karl Brown, neared fifties. Jim Allenby had earlier fallen eight short of his century as Glamorgan lost an early wicket. However, Murray Goodwin took his overnight score to 194 before being dismissed by Simon Kerrigan and shared a useful 68 with Mark Wallace (37) for the fifth-wicket. Kerrigan ensured that the Glamorgan total didn’t get completely out of hand and ended with figures of seven for 162 from 49.1 overs to follow-up his seven for 63 against Northamptonshire last week.
Kent’s second-wicket pair led their side’s response to Hampshire’s 405 for nine declared on the second day at Canterbury. The home side lost Sam Northeast relatively early to James Tomlinson, but Rob Key and Daniel Bell-Drummond added an unbroken 163. Key ended not out on 105, with Bell-Drummond on 74 and Kent on 200 for one. Sean Ervine did the bulk of Hampshire’s run scoring in the morning, hitting 72 before being the first of three men to fall to James Tredwell.
Northamptonshire won the day’s early Friends Life t20 match by beating Gloucestershire by 17 runs. On a much-improved Cheltenham pitch from the one that played host to Warwickshire on Sunday, the Steelbacks racked up 206 for three after being asked to bat. Richard Levi was at his best and bludgeoned 110 off only 62 balls, while Alex Wakely (35 off 24 balls) partnered him during a stand of 89, and Steven Crook provided late impetus with an undefeated 27 that spanned only 12 balls. There were some eye-watering bowling figures on show, with Dan Christian (3-0-37-0) and Chris Dent (3-0-41-0) particularly expensive. Benny Howell (two for 32) and Tom Smith (one for 25) were the comfortable picks of the attack.
Gloucestershire’s run chase then began badly as they slipped to 21 for three following three wickets for David Willey (four for 32). However, Ian Cockbain led the challenge with a 47-ball 60 and Alec Gidman smashed 49 off only 19 balls to take them close. Gloucestershire ended short, but their chief executive Tom Richardson will have been relieved that a poor pitch didn’t once again turn the match, and this year’s financially important Cheltenham Festival, into a farce. The team, though, will now find it hard to qualify for the quarter-finals and sit last in the Midlands/Wales/West Group with just a single win from their six matches.
Middlesex moved to the top of the South Group - albeit having played more games than their nearest rivals - following a comfortable win over Sussex at Hove. The home side made a middling 148 for seven from their 20 overs as stand-in skipper Chris Nash made 61 not out off 46 balls. Gareth Berg was the pick of the Middlesex attack with three for 19 from three overs. Paul Stirling then got the Panthers' run chase of to a lightning start by taking 22 off the opening over of debutant Lewis Hatchett. Joe Denly then made a typically stylish 53 off 46 balls, with Middlesex getting home, after a brief wobble, in the final over to win by six wickets.
Tomorrow’s Fixtures: (FLt20 start times in brackets, BST)
day one, LV=CCD1, Derbyshire v Yorkshire at Chesterfield
Yorkshire will hope to pick up points to help their title challenge when they travel to last-placed Derbyshire. They are back to full fitness, with Andrew Gale (hand), Moin Ashraf (back), Phil Jaques (abdominal strain), Steve Patterson (toe) and Azeem Rafiq (knee) all having fully recovered from injuries in recent days of weeks.
Yorkshire squad: Alex Lees, Adam Lyth, Phil Jaques, Andrew Gale (captain), Gary Ballance, Adil Rashid, Andrew Hodd, Liam Plunkett, Ryan Sidebottom, Steve Patterson, Jack Brooks, Azeem Rafiq, Moin Ashraf, Richard Pyrah.
The home side have local favourite Ben Slater in their 14-man squad as they search desperately for a first win of the season. Slater has played club cricket at Chesterfield since the age of seven and will be looking to make an impression. Derbyshire have also selected 18 year-old Greg Cork, son of former England all-rounder Dominic, in their squad. Cork junior is a left-arm seam-bowler and capable lower-order batsman. Missing is overseas batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul due to a hamstring injury.
Derbyshire squad: Chesney Hughes, Ben Slater, Wayne Madsen (captain), Wes Durston, Dan Redfern, Richard Johnson, Peter Burgoyne, Tom Poynton, Jonathan Clare, Tim Groenewald, Mark Footitt, Mark Turner, Tom Knight, Greg Cork.
day one, LV=CCD1, Sussex v Middlesex at Hove (1200 BST start)
day three, LV=CCD1, Warwickshire v Nottinghamshire at Edgbaston
day one, LV=CCD2, Essex v Leicestershire at Chelmsford
The home side will still harbour hopes of promotion to Division One for next year and simply must beat stragglers Leicestershire if they are to keep those hopes alive. They will have do so without the injured trio of Ravi Bopara (side strain), Mark Pettini (quad) and Tom Westley (broken finger), with Bopara unable to play even as a specialist batsman in four-day cricket. Greg Smith will slot into the middle-order after impressing in the Friends Life t20, while Tom Craddock should fill the spin berth after his performance against the England XI earlier this month.
Essex squad: Hamish Rutherford, Jaik Mickleburgh, Owais Shah, Greg Smith, Ryan ten Doeschate, Ben Foakes, James Foster (captain), Graham Napier, David Masters, Tom Craddock, Tymal Mills, Reece Topley.
Leicestershire have several injury problems of their own, with Matthew Hoggard, Jigar Naik and Robbie Williams all ruled out, and left-arm spinner Claude Henderson having linked up with South Africa to begin his coaching assignment with them. James Sykes is therefore in line for a 2013 Championship debut.
Leicestershire squad: Greg Smith, Niall O’Brien, Ned Eckersley, Joe Burns, Josh Cobb (captain), Matthew Boyce, Shiv Thakor, Rob Taylor, James Sykes, Ollie Freckingham, Alex Wyatt, Anthony Ireland, Michael Thornely.
day one, LV=CCD2, Gloucestershire v Worcestershire at Cheltenham
Worcestershire could hand a Championship debut to fast-bowler Graeme Cessford, who is named in a 12-man squad. Alan Richardson is also included, as are Joe Leach and Shaaiq Choudhry, who is likely to battle with Cessford for the final place in the starting eleven.
Worcestershire squad: Daryl Mitchell (captain), Matthew Pardoe, Thilan Samaraweera, Moeen Ali, Alexei Kervezee, Joe Leach, Ben Cox, Gareth Andrew, Jack Shantry, Graeme Cessford, Alan Richardson, Shaaiq Choudhry.
day three, LV=CCD2, Kent v Hampshire at Canterbury
day three, LV=CCD2, Lancashire v Glamorgan at Old Trafford
Mid/Wales/West Group, FLt20, Northamptonshire v Somerset at Wantage Road (1830 BST start)
Weather Forecast: The heatwave will continue tomorrow, as it will for the foreseeable future, with temperatures peaking at between 24 and 29 degrees Celsius. There will be occasional cloud cover, especially in the north, while the south-east may see a thunderstorm or two in the late afternoon.
© Cricket World 2013