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LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 3 Day 1: April 21st – 24th - Latest News, Scores and Match Reports

LV= Insurance County Championship 2022
LV= Insurance County Championship 2022
©Cricket World / John Mallett
 

Here are all the latest news, scores and match report updates from the LV= Insurance County Championship 2022 Round 3 Day 1: April 21st

Thursday April 21


Division One


Kent vs Hampshire, Canterbury

A Daniel Bell-Drummond century helped Kent to 271 for seven against Hampshire, after a fluctuating first day in their LV= Insurance County Championship match at Canterbury.

Bell-Drummond hit 149 from 231 balls, with 25 fours and a six, as he put on 126 for the fourth wicket with Kent’s next highest scorer Jordan Cox, who made 51.

The hosts were on top for the first two sessions, but Hampshire used the new ball to bowl themselves back into contention, Keith Barker ending the day with four for 36 and Mohammad Abbas taking two for 57.

Abbas struck in the seventh over, getting Zak Crawley caught behind for seven after Kent had won the toss and chosen to bat, in sunny but blustery conditions at the St. Lawrence.

Bell-Drummond, who’d struggled in his three previous innings this season, came in at three and brought up his fifty just before lunch, stylishly cutting Mason Crane to the deep-backward point boundary. He cracked two further fours in the same over, leaving Kent on 97 for one at the end of the morning session.

Ben Compton was out shortly after the resumption, for under three figures for the first time this season, when Barker pinged back his off stump for 27, ending a stand of 98.

Barker then removed Tawanda Muyeye for just one, strangling him down the leg side where he was caught by Ben Brown.

The scoring rate slowed to a crawl for the next hour, but when Crane returned Bell-Drummond cashed in, hitting him for successive fours to bring up his hundred, the first a cut to third man, the second a drive through mid-on.

Kent were 177 for three at tea and Bell-Drummond ramped up the pressure early in the evening session, smashing Felix Organ for six over long on. Cox, perhaps mindful of his seven-ball dismissal in the loss to Lancashire, was less hurried, scoring at around half Bell-Drummond’s rate.

When Kyle Abbott finally trapped Bell-Drummond lbw in the 85th over, the momentum shifted. Although Cox reached 50 driving Abbas through long off for four, Barker then had Ollie Robinson caught behind for seven and Cox was caught behind off Abbas.

Barker subsequently removed Matt Milnes for four, caught by Liam Dawson at second slip, leaving Darren Stevens, who was unbeaten on 13 and Hamid Qadri (two not out) to bat out the final two overs.

Lancashire vs Gloucestershire, Emirates Old Trafford

ENGLAND’S James Anderson much-vaunted return to red ball cricket ended wicketless despite Lancashire enjoying the best of a contrasting first day of their LV=Insurance County Championship Division One game at Emirates Old Trafford against Gloucestershire.

At the close, Lancashire were 11 for one after the visitors were dismissed for 252, having chosen to bat, which will come as a severe disappointment for Gloucestershire after a superb opening session saw Graeme van Buuren’s men go into lunch at 101 unbeaten and hopeful of building a competitive total.

But a calamitous middle session, during which they lost six wickets for just 69 runs, proved decisive as the visiting batters struggled to deal with the accuracy of Pakistani international Hassan Ali who finished with excellent figures of six for 47.

39-year-old Anderson, playing his first competitive cricket since the fourth Ashes Test in January this year, took the new ball alongside Hassan, but looked understandably rusty as Chris Dent and Marcus Harris began the innings in confident fashion.

A change of ends did little to improve Anderson’s fortunes as a chanceless session ended with the introduction of Matt Parkinson who was immediately hoisted into the stands in his first over by Harris.

After lunch the Australian Test opener would get a life on 46 when he was dropped by Luke Wells at first slip off Hassan, but it was Dent who would kick start proceedings for Lancashire when he was caught by Steven Croft at second slip off Hassan for 52.

At 119 for one there looked to be no cause for alarm until Harris departed caught down the leg side off Mahmood for a well-made 67, quickly followed by the in-form James Bracey, who was clean bowled by George Balderson for five with the kind of delivery he was probably expecting from Anderson.

Van Buuren joined the procession, handing another wicket to Mahmood with a leg side catch to Phil Salt for four, before Hassan returned to claim two victims in two balls as Miles Hammond edged to Salt on nine, followed by Tom Lace, who was trapped in front first delivery attempting to play to leg.

From 150 for six, Ryan Higgins and Zafar Gohar staged a recovery with the seventh pair seeing off Anderson’s third spell while milking the inconsistent Danny Lamb for a number of boundaries.

The day’s other England-related subplot, apart from Anderson, probably concerned Parkinson, with the leg spinner’s seven wickets in Lancashire’s win over Kent increasing the clamour for him to be selected in the Test team by the national side’s new regime.

And it was Parkinson who would make the crucial breakthrough in the 79th over of the day when he tempted Zafar down the track for a stumping from Salt that ended a seventh wicket partnership of 65 and saw the Pakistani depart for 27.

Hassan, who is enjoying his arrival in county cricket, took his fourth wicket when Josh Shaw chopped on for 18 and followed quickly with his fifth when Jared Warner was well caught at third slip by Lamb without scoring.

There would be no more spells for Anderson, who finished with figures of 0 for 30 from 16 overs, with Hassan wrapping things up soon afterwards when Ajeet Dale drove loosely to Josh Bohannon at point for four to leave Higgins unbeaten on 51.

Balderson and Wells looked to have safely negotiated a tricky spell of six overs until the former set off for a run that wasn’t there and was left stranded on five as Zafar threw down the stumps to leave the Red Rose 11 for one at the close.

Northamptonshire vs Yorkshire, The County Ground Northampton

Jordan Thompson starred with bat and ball on the first day of Yorkshire’s LV = Insurance clash with Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.

The Leeds-born all-rounder struck in successive balls to remove Northamptonshire skipper Ricardo Vasconcelos and night-watchman Simon Kerrigan as the hosts stumbled to 26 for two in reply to Yorkshire’s 296 all out.

Thompson’s double strike followed his quick-fire 51 which guided Yorkshire from the choppy waters of 206-7 to the brink of a third batting point.

Rising star Harry Brook top scored for the visitors with 84, sharing a stand of 131 with Dawid Malan, while Gareth Berg, still running in at the age of 41 snared 5-58, his seventh five-wicket haul in first-class cricket.

Berg soon gave Tykes skipper Steven Patterson reason to regret his decision to bat with three wickets in a typically probing opening spell.

The elder statesman of the new-ball art was indebted to debutant Will Young for the wicket of Adam Lyth, the New Zealander hurling his 6ft 2” frame to his right at second slip to clasp the edge inches above the turf. Berg, then induced a thin nick through to keeper Lewis McManus to send George Hill packing for a duck.

It should have been even better two balls later when Malan edged another ball which moved away off the seam, only for Vasconcelos to shell the most routine of slip catches.

Undeterred Berg struck again in his sixth over when Dimuth Karunaratne gave McManus more catching practice, but the dropping of Malan was to haunt the hosts for some time.

Karunaratne’s demise brought Brook to the crease fresh from his unbeaten half-century in last week’s win over Gloucestershire. The 23-year-old right-hander, who made his T20 international debut on the West Indies tour this winter, also has history with Wantage Road, having made a century in Yorkshire’s win in the same fixture a year ago and he was quickly into stride, a savage pull in front of square off Aussie debutant Matt Kelly an early highlight.

Meanwhile, Malan, a scapegoat for England’s post-Ashes red-ball reset, was making the most of his early reprieve as Luke Proctor made the mistake of feeding his trademark cover drive. The duo gorged on Kerrigan too in the run up to lunch, Brook hammering the spinner over mid-wicket for six. The 100-partnership came soon after the resumption, but Berg returned to pin Malan lbw.

Nevertheless with Brook continuing serenely on the visitors were in charge at 203-4 before the game took another turn. Ben Sanderson, who’d not been at his best with the new ball, bowled Harry Duke before grabbing the prize wicket of Brook, both off the inside-edge and with Rob Keogh castling Dom Bess in the intervening over, Yorkshire suddenly found themselves pegged back.

Thompson though fought back aggressively, clattering a six into the advertising hoardings in a 69-ball 50, his fourth in first-class cricket, before Kelly  removed him and Patterson in successive balls.

Fittingly, it was Berg who then bowled Harris Rauf to complete his fifer, leaving Yorkshire four runs shy of a third batting point.

Vasconcelos despatched the first ball of the host’s reply to the boundary, but Northamptonshire were largely circumspect, at one stage absorbing 36 balls without scoring.

Their bid to reach the close unscathed  was undone by Thompson (two for 13) who trapped Vasconcelos in front before having Kerrigan taken at slip for a first ball duck.

Surrey vs Somerset, Kia Oval

Skipper Tom Abell scored Somerset’s first hundred of the season in the LV County Championship as his side finally found some batting form against Surrey at the Kia Oval.

Beaten in their first two Division One games by Hampshire and Essex, Somerset took a bit of a risk when they opted to bat first on a green-tinged pitch.

But Abell, who came in during the tenth over following the dismissal of Tom Lammonby, batted through the rest of an absorbing, hard-fought day to reach 121 not out as Somerset, who are looking for their first Championship win at The Oval since 1995, closed on 283 for six.

It was an outstanding effort by the 28-year-old who had to grind it out in the morning session when, with a bit more luck, Surrey might have taken three or four wickets.

As conditions eased Abell prospered. His most productive partnership was with veteran James Hildreth, who had made one of only two half-centuries in Somerset’s four innings this season but passed 18,000 first-class runs in his 54.

They added 103 in 28 overs either side of tea at nearly four runs an over to secure Somerset’s first batting bonus point of the season and it was a surprise when Hildreth, who scored a hundred in this fixture last season, drove loosely at off-spinner Will Jacks and was caught at point shortly after reaching his 80th first-class fifty.

Abell’s four previous innings this season had yielded just 28 runs, but it wasn’t until he was on 97 that he offered a chance when Pope at second slip couldn’t hang on diving full-length to his right despite getting his fingertips to the ball. A clip off his legs in the next over from Topley took Abell to his ninth first-class hundred and at stumps he’d batted for five and a half hours, faced 247 balls and hit 19 fours with power to add tomorrow.

Somerset had scored 109, 154, 180 and 135 in their four previous Championship innings this season and their supporters might have feared a repeat when Lammonby fell to Reece Topley. The left-armer got a ball angled in to straighten and the edge was well taken low at second slip by Pope.

Surrey’s accurate attack gave away only 62 runs in the morning session and their efforts were typified by Sam Curran, who was playing his first game of 2022 after recovering from a back injury. He bowled a six-over spell at a cost of nine runs and four more after lunch which went for eight runs.

Abell and Matt Renshaw put on 66 for the second wicket when Jamie Overton had Renshaw caught at second slip for 48 with the first ball of a new spell, and Somerset were 120 for three in the 53rd over after Tom Banton was drawn forward by Jordan Clark and got a thin edge to wicketkeeper Ben Foakes.

Hildreth’s dismissal came off the final delivery before Surrey took the new ball and Jordan Clark enjoyed immediate success with it, removing Steven Davies for a duck.

Craig Overton was caught at backward point when Topley dug one in short to pick up his second wicket and leave Somerset 237 for six and in danger of squandering their captain’s diligence.

But Josh Davey helped Abell add an unbroken 46 for the seventh wicket and ensured Somerset enjoyed their best day of the season so far.

Warwickshire vs Essex, Edgbaston

Champions Warwickshire enjoyed a strong first day of their LV=Insurance County Championship match with Essex after the visitors' decision to bat first backfired at Edgbaston. 

Essex chose to bat on a good-looking pitch but were bowled out for 168 as only Tom Westley (80, 176 balls, 11 fours) showed the requisite patience against an accurate home attack. 

From a relatively solid 98 for two just after lunch, the visitors suffered a post-lunch implosion of five wickets for 11 runs in 43 balls. Seam bowlers Olly Hannon-Dalby and Liam Norwell shared five wickets before Danny Briggs did a consummate spinner's job by briskly taking out the lower order with four for 31. 

Warwickshire's batsmen were then made to work hard in reply but they reached the close on 76 for two with Dom Sibley unbeaten on 33 (79 balls). 

Essex, unchanged from the team that beat Somerset at Taunton last week, did not hesitate to bat against a Warwickshire attack without injured England pair Olly Stone and Chris Woakes, but soon lost both openers. Nick Browne edged Hannon-Dalby behind, then Alastair Cook (23, 46 balls) was lbw to Will Rhodes's sixth ball. 

Dan Lawrence started like a train, hitting five fours from his first 14 balls, then lost steam in reaching 30 from 62 and was derailed by a full-length Hannon-Dalby delivery which eluded an airy drive to hit off-stump. 

That triggered a collapse accelerated by two careless dismissals as Matt Critchley nicked a slash at Hannon-Dalby and Adam Rossington lifted Norwell to cover. Simon Harmer was also culpable, missing an across-the-line swat at Briggs after Adam Wheater nicked a good one from Norwell.  

Shane Snater lifted Briggs for six but sent an attempted repeat into the hands of deep mid-wicket. Warwick-born Aussie Mark Steketee hung around to helped Lawrence add 30 but then played back fatally to the spinner who polished off the innings when Lawrence tried to land one in the Family Stand but was calmly taken by Matt Lamb eight and a half inches inside the rope. 

Warwickshire's reply was given a lively launch by debutant Alex Davies (22, 21 balls) but Essex hit back well as Davies edged Sam Cook to second slip and Rob Yates was pinned lbw by Steketee. 

The seamers, led by the impressive Snater, bowled well and got a few past the bat in an intense and high-quality last hour but Sibley and Sam Hain survived to add an unbroken 30 in 16 overs. 

A difficult day for Essex brought another worrying twist, for England too, in its closing stages when Lawrence pulled up sharply while chasing a Sibley drive, and limped off in some discomfort, clutching his hamstring.

 

Division Two


Durham vs Nottinghamshire, Riverside

A five-fer by Liam Patterson-White put Nottinghamshire firmly in the driving seat on day one against Durham at Chester-le-street as the hosts failed to capitalise on a good start.

After a quick start to the session which saw a 50 partnership after the first hour and Dickson pass 50 individually, Notts removed both to help sow the seeds of a batting collapse, Dane Paterson removing Jones and Luke Fletcher pinning Dickson LBW.

Notts continued to plug away, Patterson-White spinning his way through the hosts lineup, the spinner claiming the prized wickets of Scott Borthwick and Keegan Petersen to help reduce the hosts to 135-5.

Fletcher, Dane Paterson and James Pattinson all chimed in with wickets to reduce the hosts to 230 all out, Ned Eckersley and Ben Raine making the score somewhat respectable for the home side.

On a sunny day in County Durham, Steven Mullaney won the toss and decided to put the hosts into bat, as Durham went in search of a good start to their innings.

They were provided with one, with Jones and Dickson seeing off the opening overs before setting a decent platform, bringing up the 50 partnership just after the first hour while Notts looked for something out of the seemingly lifeless wicket.

Paterson then removed Jones after he attempted to pull a length delivery that was never there to be pulled, Tom Moores taking a feathered edge behind the stumps as Notts forced their way into the game.

Dickson passed 50 for the third time this season, playing an innings filled with a wide variety of shots, stroking the ball to all corners of the ground as he looked at ease at the crease. But, the returning Luke Fletcher ended his innings, trapping him LBW with the last ball of the morning session to claim his 600th professional wicket. 

Patterson-White then took the spotlight after lunch, the left arm spinner pinning Petersen in front with a low delivery for five, before tempting home captain Borthwick to drive and Mullaney taking a juggling catch at slip to send him packing for eight.

David Bedingham played some eye-catching strokes as he normally does, but he feathered behind off the bowling of Paterson for just 14. His dismissal left Durham in a position of peril, Notts taking three quick wickets after the break in a spell that shifted the momentum of the day.

Ned Eckersley played well for his 31, though he was fortunate after surviving a huge LBW shout on 15 against Patterson-White and being dropped by Ben Duckett at second slip on 26. James Pattinson soon put an end to his resistance, cleaning up his stumps with a beautiful in-swinging delivery to firmly assert Notts’ dominance.

Liam Trevaskis was forced to retire hurt after being hit twice on the head by Pattinson bouncers, while Ben Raine helped provide some much needed lower order resistance to try and drag Durham towards a respectable first innings total.

Matthew Potts was out for 10 trying to hook Paterson over square leg, before Patterson-White returned to centre stage to clean up the tail to complete his five-fer, collecting the wickets of concussion substitute George Drissell and Raine to leave Durham all out with a first innings total of 230. 

Ben Slater and Haseeb Hameed then watchfully saw out the day to leave Notts 50-0, looking to make the most out of day two to try and set up a victory. As for Durham, they will be kicking themselves for not making the most out of the pitch, and praying it doesn't flatten out tomorrow.

 

Glamorgan vs Middlesex, Sophia Gardens

16 wickets fell on the first day in the LV=Insurance County Championship match between Glamorgan and Middlesex as both seam bowling attacks made the most of a pitch with some life in it.

Having won the toss Middlesex put the hosts into bat and had them bowled out after the lunch break for just 122. Shaheen Shah Afridi picked up three wickets on his Middlesex debut but it was Toby Roland-Jones who looked the most threatening throughout. 

Middlesex finished the day on 171 for six, 49 runs in front of Glamorgan. While the lead is not yet significant, given the speed with which wickets have fallen in this game Middlesex are very well placed to push for their first win of the season.

Middlesex could have had their first wicket from the third ball of the match, David Lloyd getting a big edge off Afridi that was put down at third slip. However, the visitors did not have to wait long for their first breakthrough, with Andrew Salter clipping a ball from Roland-Jones to mid-wicket for a nine-ball duck. Salter has now made 43 runs in five innings as Glamorgan’s makeshift opener.

The real prize came in the ninth over of Glamorgan’s innings when Afridi dismissed the world’s best Test batsman, Marnus Labuschagne, for just 8 runs. The Australian attempted to leave a ball that got big on him and he edged it on to his stumps. When Sam Northeast was out the very next ball caught at second slip Glamorgan were 21 for three and in real trouble. 

That became 24 for four in the following over when Kiran Carlson played a big drive at a ball from Roland-Jones that he inside edged to the wicket-keeper. The fifth wicket fell with the score on 30 when Chris Cooke called for a single that wasn’t there and Sam Robson threw down the stumps with Lloyd well short of his ground.

The collapse continued into the second hour of the day with Callum Taylor and Michael Neser both departing in quick succession to leave Glamorgan 52 for seven.

A recovery of sorts followed as useful contributions from Cooke and James Harris taking Glamorgan passed the hundred mark. 

Middlesex started brightly in their first innings with Sam Robson making a sprightly 21 from 29 balls before he was trapped lbw by the impressive Harris who was playing his first match against Middlesex since leaving them over the winter. 

Mark Stoneman looked more comfortable than any other batter on this surface on his way to a well-made 52 before he edged behind off the bowling of Timm van der Gugten. While Stoneman stood firm wickets tumbled at the other end as Harris held sway, finishing the day with figures of three for 48.

Glamorgan came right back into the match when five wickets fell for 42 runs with Middlesex going from 68 for one to 110 for six but the first partnership of over fifty for the match between John Simpson and Roland-Jones put their team in a strong position at the close.

Leicestershire vs Derbyshire, Uptonsteel County Ground

Derbyshire seamer Sam Conners continued his fine start to the season by taking four for 62 as Leicestershire were dismissed for 213 on the opening day of the LV= Insurance County Championship clash between East Midlands rivals at the Uptonsteel County Ground.

Opener Sam Evans top-scored with 63, South African all-rounder Wiaan Mulder made 39 on his Leicestershire debut and Ed Barnes an unbeaten 34 but it was another disappointing first innings by the home side, who have picked up only four batting points from the first three matches of the season.

Sri Lanka Test fast bowler Suranga Lakmal, wicketless against Sussex last week, finished with two for 52 and saw two slip catches spilled, and 19-year-old seamer Nick Potts looked a decent prospect with two for 32 in only his second senior appearance, but 23-year-old Conners was Derbyshire’s brightest spark with the ball, raising his wickets tally for the season to 14.

Derbyshire closed on 36 for one in reply, having lost skipper Billy Godleman. Pakistan star Shan Masood, already past 400 runs for the season in just his fourth innings for the county, is unbeaten on 20.

Skipper Colin Ackermann chose to bat first on a green-tinged pitch but Leicestershire struggled. They lost four wickets for 68 runs before lunch and another three in the afternoon to be 158 for seven at tea.

Hassan Azad, who began the season with a century against Worcestershire, cut and drove Conners for the day’s first boundaries but Conners then produced an inswinger to have him leg before.

Anuj Dal nipped one past the outside edge to bowl George Rhodes for six, then took a good catch at backward point as Ackermann played loosely at Potts and there was a bonus wicket for Derbyshire in the over before lunch when leg-spinner Mattie McKiernan, playing his first match this season, bowled Louis Kimber.

The Kimber dismissal ushered in Mulder, who tested positive for Covid-19 while on Test duty earlier this month. Mulder survived a low chance to Alex Thomson at slip off Lakmal on one but grew in assuredness and picked up half a dozen boundaries as he and Evans built a partnership.

After his match-saving half-century at Chester-le-Street, Evans completed another but then gave his wicket away with a poor shot, hanging his bat out to a ball from Conners to give an easy slip catch. The fifth wicket had added 69 but its value was diminished when Harry Swindells was lbw without scoring in the same over.

Thomson put down Barnes at slip in almost a carbon copy of the Mulder escape but Lakmal was rewarded when he beat the South African’s attempt to work the ball to leg, trapping him in front.

The Sri Lankan’s second wicket followed four overs after tea. Callum Parkinson, the left-arm spinner, unsettled by being hit on his bowling hand, then steered a ball rather tamely to second slip.  Beuran Hendricks was ninth out when he dragged a Conners full toss on to his stumps.

Barnes and Will Davis held Derbyshire up with a 39-run stand for the last wicket that at least secured one batting bonus point but ended when Davis edged behind to give Potts his second wicket.

Derbyshire faced 16 overs at the close as they began their reply, losing Godleman, who was tested by Hendricks before being caught behind off a ball he tried to leave.

Worcestershire vs Sussex, New Road

Brett D’Oliveira struck his second century in two games since becoming Worcestershire CCC Club Captain on the opening day of the LV=Insurance County Championship match with injury-hit Sussex at New Road.

The 30-year-old followed up his unbeaten 134 against Leicestershire at the Uptonsteel County Ground with another superb knock of 106 not out to steer his side to 338 for five by the close.

Opener Ed Pollock’s rapid 77 got the innings off to a flying start and then D’Oliveira and Ed Barnard, who made 75, pressed home the advantage during a fifth wicket partnership of 166.

Sussex stuck to their task on a wicket which was not straightforward for batting with some movement all day.

But they were left to regret Tom Alsop at first slip dropping D’Oliveira on 19 off Henry Crocombe.

Worcestershire ended the day in a position of strength and looking to press on for maximum batting points tomorrow morning.

D’Oliveira took over the captaincy reins from Joe Leach this summer and is certainly so far thriving on the extra responsibility.

He is the first member of his famous cricketing family to be Worcestershire’s official captain, a feat not achieved by grandfather Basil or father Damian.

D’Oliveira has been described as the “heartbeat” of the team by Head Coach Alex Gidman and told to make no changes to his approach after becoming captain.

Sussex were decimated by injuries and handed a debut to all-rounder, Grant Stewart, and pace bowler, George Burrows.

Stewart, 28, has made the temporary switch from Kent and has played six T20Is for Italy while Burrows, 23, has moved to Hove on a short term contract after being released by Lancashire last summer.

Steven Finn, Fynn Hudson-Prentice, George Garton, Dan Ibrahim, Jack Carson and are all side-lined along with England paceman, Jofra Archer.

Fellow England bowler, Ollie Robinson. is unavailable as he requires dental treatment after suffering a tooth infection.

But he travelled with the team to New Road to continue training ahead of a return to action next week.

D’Oliveira, opted to bat on winning the toss and New Road looked a picture in warm sunshine with a sizeable crowd watching cricket at the ground in April for the first time in three years.

An unchanged side was selected by Worcestershire after impressing when coming so close to forcing victory in the opening game away to Leicestershire.

The ground looked in immaculate condition just seven weeks after being under several feet of water via the flooding of the adjacent River Severn

Pollock had scored a superb century in the second innings versus Leicestershire, his first ever County Championship appearance, and he again looked in excellent form when opening with Jake Libby.

He had a slice of good fortune on 36 when he aimed a big hit against Stewart and the ball was helped over the boundary for six by Burrows fielding at fine leg. 

But Pollock continued to play with great freedom and brought up a half century off only 47 balls.

Libby played a solid support role during an opening stand of 85 but then was the first of three wickets to fall in four overs.

He nibbled at a delivery from Sussex captain Tom Haines and Tom Alsop clung onto a low sharp chance at slip.

There was warm applause for Pakistan Test star, Azhar Ali, as he made his way to the wicket on his home debut for Worcestershire.

Haines struck again when Pollock on 77 forced a delivery off the back foot and was caught at backward point. He faced just 74 deliveries and hit one six and 14 fours.

Jack Haynes flicked a delivery from Burrows off his legs into the hands of square leg.

After making 20, Azhar was lbw to a delivery angled back into him by Haines at 133-4.

There was a sign of normality returning to the world after the pandemic with the renowned tea and home made cakes in the Ladies Pavilion being served.

D’Oliveira blossomed after his let-off and a back foot cover drive for four off Jamie Allen was one of several sumptuous strokes reeled off by the 30-year-old.

Barnard had been the ideal ally when launching a recovery with D’Oliveira at Leicester and the pair again blossomed during the afternoon session today.

The all-rounder showed his class with a delicate late cut for four off Tom Clark.

After tea, the fifth wicket pair consolidated Worcestershire’s position and increased their partnership to 166.

The second new ball brought about a breakthrough when Barnard was lbw to Stewart for 75.

D’Oliveira was made to work hard for his runs in the 90s but a single off Crocombe took him to three figures off 216 balls with 11 boundaries. Haines ended with figures of 17-3-46-3.

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