The weather delayed things rather less than was originally feared, meaning that significant play was possible in all eight of today’s games in the LV= County Championship.
Lancashire, resuming on 125 for five, at Liverpool closed with the upper hand over Warwickshire after extending their first innings to 250 and then reducing the visitors to 68 for five by the close. Glen Chapple dismissed Varun Chopra for a duck in the first over of the Bears innings and picked up the key wicket of Ian Bell for 18 to end with two for 10, while there was a wicket apiece for the two spinners and Kyle Hogg. Earlier, Chapple had hit a fluent 44 and added a useful 60 for the eighth wicket with Luke Procter (46).
Chris Read continued his fine efforts from yesterday and rescued Nottinghamshire from first innings oblivion against Somerset. His unbeaten 104 from 135 balls represented over 71 per cent of the runs scored by the home side’s batsmen and over 64 per cent of their overall total of 162. Peter Trego was Somerset’s hero as, entrusted with the new-ball owing to the absence of Vernon Philander, he returned his maiden Championship five-wicket haul to end with figures of five for 53.
In reply, Arul Suppiah helped the visitors come to terms with the loss of their captain – Marcus Trescothick had earlier fallen to the floor clutching his ankle – and ended unbeaten on 50 as Somerset closed strongly on 78 for one.
Middlesex eventually got their match at Lord’s underway on the second day but were soon wishing they hadn’t as a Graham Onions double-strike helped reduce them to two for three. Andrew Strauss marked his return by being bowled second ball by Onions and was soon followed by Joe Denly, Sam Robson and not long afterwards by Chris Rogers. At this stage the score read 28 for four, but Neil Dexter found form to close unbeaten on 65 and shared a fifth-wicket stand of 55 with Dawid Malan (35) to partially counter the Durham threat. The home side reached stumps on 132 for five.
Surrey’s day on the other side of the Thames was even worse as they closed on 123 for seven against Worcestershire at The Oval. They had begun brightly thanks to a 48-run opening stand between Jason Roy and Steven Davies – which was largely dominated by the latter who made 38 from 36 balls – before losing five wickets for 21 runs as Alan Richardson and Richard Jones ran amok. Tom Maynard (34) and Chris Jordan (20) then added 53 for the sixth wicket, but Richardson returned to complete his 16th five-wicket haul to end with five for 42 from 16 overs.
In Division Two, Josh Cobb and Ramnaresh Sarwan both made 105 as Leicestershire closed on 318 for seven at Derby. Tony Palladino had begun the day well for Derbyshire by taking the early wicket of Jacques du Toit (14), but Greg Smith (35) added 80 with Sarwan for the third wicket, before Cobb and Sarwan shared a fourth-wicket stand of 141. The home side hit back with a couple of late wickets, but the Foxes will be happy with their day’s work.
Will Gidman’s all-round efforts gave Gloucestershire the slight edge at the end of the second day against Kent at Canterbury. The 27 year-old added 31 to his overnight 25 to record his ninth first-class fifty before taking three wickets in the Kent reply. The home side slipped to 30 for four at one stage, but Darren Stevens made 54 before falling to the day’s other batting hero; Ed Young who had ended unbeaten with 55 in the visitors’ 255 all out. Kent closed on 119 for six to trail by 136 runs.
Phil Jaques celebrated his anointing as a Yorkshireman (see County News In Brief) by hitting his 39th first-class century against Essex. His innings of 126 contributed over half of the runs to his side’s total of 246, with captain Andrew Gale’s 35 the next best effort. Tymal Mills starred for Essex with four crucial wickets in the middle of the innings, while the ever-reliable David Masters ended with three for 65. Ryan Sidebottom (two for 21) and Steven Patterson (three for eight) took all five of the visitors’ wickets to fall as they closed on 72 for five.
Huw Water helped Glamorgan recover from their disastrous first innings against Hampshire, with the home side closing on 73 for three – 20 runs ahead at the end of the second day at Cardiff. The 25 year-old took a career-best seven for 53 to restrict Hampshire’s first innings advantage to just 53 as they were all out for 156. Nick James made 31 in Glamorgan’s second innings with David Balcombe, Hamza Riazuddin and Sean Ervine picking up a wicket each.
In today’s MCC university match – which again is not awarded first-class status – Durham MCCU bounced back from their humbling a fortnight ago to dismiss a weakened Northamptonshire for 248 at the university grounds. It could have been better for the students, as, at one stage, they had reduced the visitors to 137 for seven, but Con de Lange hit 53 from number eight and the rest of the lower-order chipped in. Bertie Blackwell returned the best bowling figures for the home side, who closed on 47 for one, and ended with four for 83.
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Lancashire v Warwickshire at Liverpool
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Middlesex v Durham at Lord’s
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Nottinghamshire v Somerset at Trent Bridge
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Surrey v Worcestershire at The Oval
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Derbyshire v Leicestershire at Derby
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Glamorgan v Hampshire at Cardiff
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Kent v Gloucestershire at Canterbury
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Yorkshire v Essex at Headingley
Day Two, MCCU Match, Durham MCCU v Northamptonshire at Durham
Weather Forecast: The weekend looks like being much better than originally forecast with the showers expected to be much more widely spaced than first thought. Overall, the weather will be similar to today’s with highs of between 11 and 14 degrees Celsius.
County News In Brief:
Essex have completed their line-up of overseas players for the Friends Life t20 by signing New Zealand all-rounder James Franklin. The 31 year-old has become something of a Twenty20 specialist over the past year and has played in both the IPL and in Australia’s Big Bash League.
Yorkshire have completed the registration of Australian batsman Phil Jaques as a non-overseas player. Jaques will now not be able to compete as a local player in Australia at anything above club level. The county had hoped to sign his fellow countryman Mitchell Starc as overseas player, but that deal could now be scuppered by Starc’s anticipated call-up for the third Test against the West Indies.
© Cricket World 2012