The spinners prospered as the eight round of matches in the LV= County Championship continued today, with Ollie Rayner, Gareth Batty and George Dockrell all putting in important performances for their teams.
Gareth Batty took six for 73 as Surrey fought back on the second day at The Oval. Warwickshire had started the day on 106 for one, but William Porterfield’s dismissal for 46 triggered a collapse of eight for 82 as the former England off-spinner ran through the middle-order. The Bears were eventually all out for 247 as Surrey limited their first innings arrears to just 24 runs.
Jason Roy began the hosts’ second innings in positive fashion with an 86-ball 71, but the Warwickshire bowlers plugged away and they closed on 144 for four to leave the match intriguingly poised.
Lancashire were all out for 392 on day two at Liverpool, as off-spinner Ollie Rayner took three of the remaining six wickets to fall to end with figures of three for 88. Ashwell Prince took his score to 144, before giving Gareth Berg his second wicket, while Gareth Cross was last man out for 41. When their turn came to bat, Middlesex lost opener Chris Rogers to Kyle Hogg’s second ball, while Ajmal Shahzad dismissed Joe Denly and Eoin Morgan in the space of three overs to reduce the visitors to 95 for five. Fortunately for them, Neil Dexter and John Simpson added an unbroken 60 for the sixth wicket and reached stumps without further loss on 155.
George Dockrell took six for 29 to help Somerset to a five-wicket win over Durham at Taunton. The Irishman ripped through the visitors’ middle and lower-middle order as they collapsed from 69 for one to be all out for 167. This left Somerset, who had earlier declared their first innings on 400 for nine, needing 152 to win, which they did in spite of some early jitters. They lost Alex Barrow first ball to Jamie Harrison and Nick Compton shortly afterwards for just seven, but Arul Suppiah anchored the chase with a knock of 73, while James Hildreth (31) and Craig Kieswetter (22 not out) chipped in with cameos.
In Division Two, Kent made Leicestershire’s bowlers pay for yesterday’s batting failure by piling up 404 for six on the second day at Grace Road. The overnight pair of Rob Key and Brendan Nash fell for 85 and 76 respectively, but it was Mike Powell who did the bulk of the damage, ending unbeaten on 133 from 276 balls.
Wes Durston hit 116 to help Derbyshire earn an important 141-run first innings lead against Essex at Chelmsford. He shared a third-wicket stand of 77 with skipper Wayne Madsen (50) after Madsen and Martin Guptill (36) had taken their second-wicket partnership to 81. Durston eventually fell for 116 as one of leg-spinner Tom Craddock’s five victims, but Tom Poynton extended Derbyshire’s lead further and ended on 50 not from just 35 balls as they were finally all out for 323. Tim Groenewald then dispatched both Essex openers in the 20 overs that were bowled in their second innings prior to stumps as they closed on 46 for two.
Glamorgan’s top-order earnt their side a rare-for-2012 first innings lead against Hampshire, as they were all out for 327 at Southampton. Will Bragg and Marcus North shared a pivotal partnership of 96 for the third-wicket as both made half centuries; and there was a useful late contribution from Dean Cosker, who made 40 not out from 38 balls, as the Welsh county gained a slender 11-run first innings advantage. The hosts faced eight overs in their second innings and reached 25 without loss.
Northamptonshire took control of their match against Gloucestershire, reducing the visitors to 156 for six in reply to their earlier 411. David Willey and David Burton shared the first three wickets to fall as the Gladiators slipped to 38 for three. However, Chris Dent and Hamish Marshall affected a partial recovery, before the former’s dismissal for 42, and Andrew Hall followed that up with two more wickets prior to stumps to leave Gloucestershire still 255 runs adrift.
Sussex eased to a relatively comfortable Clydesdale Bank 40 victory over Yorkshire, thanks to a largely indisciplined bowling effort from the visitors at Hove. Mitchell Starc and Ryan Sidebottom endured a torrid time; with the Australian quick conceding 21 runs from his opening over before finishing with no wicket for 71 from his eight overs; and Sidebottom leaking 46 runs from five overs.Moin Ashraf pulled things back with a determined spell of one for 28, but Luke Wright hit a century from just 92 balls and was aided by cameos from Chris Nash (44 from 31 balls) and Joe Gatting (45 from 43) as the home side won with 37 balls to spare.
Yorkshire had earlier made 238 for nine from their 40 overs, but they should have made more, as they lost five wickets for 12 runs from the last 18 balls of the innings. Andrew Gale recovered from a blow to the head to make 42, while Joe Root (46) and Gary Ballance (40) also showed their class. Chris Nash was the pick of the Sussex attack, taking two for 34 with his off-spin.
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Lancashire v Middlesex at Liverpool
Day Three, LV=CCD1, Surrey v Warwickshire at The Oval
Day One, LV=CCD1, Sussex v Nottinghamshire at Hove
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Essex v Derbyshire at Chelmsford
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Hampshire v Glamorgan at Southampton
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Kent v Leicestershire at Canterbury
Day Three, LV=CCD2, Northamptonshire v Gloucestershire at Wantage Road
Weather Forecast: Tomorrow should be sunny from the start with temperatures climbing to between 24 and 26 degrees Celsius by late afternoon. The weekend is also set fair, although there may be the occasional shower for the south-west on Sunday.
County News In Brief:
The ECB have confirmed that the Derbyshire pair of Wayne Madsen and Chesney Hughes will qualify for England under the old rules – a four-year residency period – as opposed to having to wait seven years according to the new rules which were announced last month.
Gloucestershire seamer David Wade has been banned from cricket for the period from 25th to 30th May after collecting nine penalty points under the ECB’s disciplinary code. Wade was reported twice in the same second eleven match for two level two breaches of the code.
Lancashire have confirmed that they will not be signing a second overseas player for the Friends Life t20 following the withdrawal of Junaid Khan. Yasir Arafat will be the Lightning’s sole overseas player in the competition.
© Cricket World 2012