The LV= County Championship made a return as the Friends Life t20 takes a break before its return in earnest at the weekend. There were good performances today from Mark Footitt, Michael Yardy, Varun Chopra and James Vince
There were wins for Somerset, Hampshire, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire, Surrey, Essex, Hampshire and Leicestershire in the evening's Friends Life t20 matches. Meanwhile, the Roses Derby at Headingley ended in a dramatic tie.
Nottinghamshire kept up their impressive run in limited-overs cricket this year by beating Lancashire to move to the top of the North Group in the Friends Life t20. The Outlaws won the toss and asked the home side to bat in front of a sparse crowd at Old Trafford. Within the space of four overs, both of the Lancashire openers were back in the pavilion.
Derbyshire made it two wins out of two to move to the top of the North Group in the Friends Life t20. They benefited from a Leicestershire batting collapse of seven for 30 to win by 24 runs at Grace Road and condemn the home side to a second defeat.
There were wins for Derbyshire, Surrey, Lancashire, Glamorgan, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire as the Friends Life t20 spluttered into life around the country amid the showers. The pick of the dayâ€™s matches was arguably Derbyshire's tense two-wicket win at Headingley, with Jonathan Clare their batting star.
Reigning Friends Life t20 champions Hampshire got the defence of their title off to a winning start with a relatively comfortable five-wicket win over Surrey under the Southampton floodlights. Michael Carberry was the stand-out player during their successful run chase, hitting a splendid 60 off only 45 balls.
Ahead of the start of the Friends Life t20 this week, Somerset captain says that the fast-paced, frenetic nature of the game is like '20 overs of explosions'.
He helped Somerset lift the trophy in 2005 but despite three further visits to the final, they are still searching for a repeat victory, something which is hopeful of putting right this year.
James Taylor, now seemingly the forgotten man of English cricket, gave the selectors another nudge by hitting an unbeaten double-hundred as Nottinghamshire comfortably drew their LV= County Championship match against Sussex.
There were wins for Somerset and Essex as the eleventh round of the LV= County Championship continued to draw to a close around the country. Over at Headingley, Yorkshire managed a draw despite the best efforts of Gary Keedy.
Kevin Pietersen was the headline act on another rain-swept day on the county circuit. He hit an unbeaten aggressive century against Yorkshire on his return from a knee injury. Elsewhere, Worcestershire kept their promotion hopes alive by wrapping up the win over Glamorgan and Middlesex thrashed the Unicorns in the Yorkshire Bank 40 at Southend-on-Sea.